Juventus’ Italian coach Massimiliano Allegri holds a press conference at the Mestalla stadium in Valencia on September 18, 2018 on the eve of the UEFA Champions League football match between Valencia CF and Juventus. / AFP PHOTO / JOSE JORDAN
Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri lamented the lack of a Video Assistant Referee after Cristiano Ronaldo was sent off on his Champions League debut for the club against Valencia on Wednesday.
A tearful Ronaldo was shown a red card in the 29th minute at the Estadio Mestalla for an altercation with Valencia defender Jeison Murillo. Juve still won the game 2-0 thanks to two penalties from Miralem Pjanic.
The decision by German official Felix Brych looked harsh. Murillo tracked Ronaldo into the box and as the players tussled, Ronaldo appeared to kick out at his opponent, who fell to the ground. Ronaldo then wafted his hand at Murillo’s head, gesturing for him to stand up.
It remains to be seen how UEFA judge Ronaldo’s offence, and subsequent dissent, but he is set to miss at least the next European game at home to Young Boys on October 2. After that comes the more threatening double header against Manchester United.
“I can only say that VAR would have helped the referee make the right decision,” Allegri said afterwards.
“Going down to 10 men in the Champions League for an incident like that is disappointing. We risked losing tonight with that and we’ll miss him for the next games too.”
UEFA have indicated they plan to implement VAR in Europe’s premier club tournament next season after the technology was used, largely successfully, at the World Cup last summer.