Dubious refereeing decisions forced the better team to lose, Chennaiyin FC assistant coach Vivek Nagul said after his team went down 0-1 against Delhi Dynamos in an Indian Super League (ISL) match here on Thursday.
It was Chennaiyin’s second consecutive loss in the tournament and they are now winless after two matches.
They were on the receiving end of a penalty decision by referee Tejas Nagvenkar.
Chennaiyin defender Manuele Blasi handled a shot from Dynamos midfielder Hans Mulder in the eighth minute. Nagvenkar promptly directed to the spot from where defender Anderson Cardoso scored the game-clinching goal. The referee also showed five yellow cards in the match that was at times physical.
“It was a dubious penalty. I don’t want to talk about it much,” Nagul said at the post match press conference.
“But the better team lost today. We also felt several Dynamos players who were on caution could have been shown red cards. But the referee didn’t. He did what he thought best and we accept it.”
The standard of supervision was also undermined by Dynamos player-manager Roberto Carlos though he defended the penalty decision.
“A penalty is a penalty. You have to accept it,” he said.
But he also questioned several other decisions taken by the referee but added the problem is not for him to think about, but should be addressed by the tournament organisers.
“Lots of fouls were given to Chennai that should been awarded to us. But it is not my problem. Don’t want to dwell on it much. Football is a body contact game. There are bound to be fouls. But sometimes I got a bit nervous by the decisions taken by the referee,” he said.
Carlos said he was happy with his team’s performance, pointing out it is more important to win rather than playing well, confident his team will get better as the tournament progresses. He also identified heat as an important factor in determining his team’s approach.
“This is normal in this heat. We were winning 1-0 so we were playing on counter-attacks. Chennai didn’t even have a short once on the target. We used the speed of Hans Mulder, (Richard) Gadze and Gustavo dos Santos. I don’t need to win 5-0. It’s the same three points,” he said.