Roma president, James Pallotta, has lashed out at the officiating in the second leg of their Champions League semi-final against Liverpool on Wednesday.
Pallotta labelled it “an absolute joke” and insisted that a video assistant referee (VAR) would have helped overturn calls he perceived went in the Reds’ favour.
Although Roma won 4-2, Liverpool advanced 7-6 on aggregate at the Stadio Olimpico.
“It’s absolutely clear that VAR is needed in the Champions League because you just can’t let stuff like this go.
“You can all look at it yourself on the film. [Edin Dzeko] potentially in the 49th minute wasn’t offside and he got taken down by the goalie.
“The 63rd minute was a handball [by Trent Alexander-Arnold] that was obvious to everybody in probably the world, expect the few people on the pitch. The 67th minute, [Patrik] Schick gets taken down in the box,” Pallotta told reporters after the game.
He however acknowledged that refereeing can be difficult, but said it’s “embarrassing” to lose on aggregate the way Roma did.
“By the way, it should have been a red card, which would have been 10 men in the 63rd minute,” Pallotta said, referring to Alexander-Arnold being in the area at the time of the handball.
“Again, Liverpool’s a great team — congratulations going forward — but if we don’t get VAR in the Champions League, stuff like this is an absolute joke.”