Chelsea captain John Terry has launched a scathing attack on Norwegian referee Tom Henning Ovrebo by claiming he was not good enough to take charge of their Champions League semi-final against Barcelona.
Ovrebo rejected four clear penalty appeals from Chelsea as they went crashing out - on the away-goal rule - to a 93rd-minute goal from Andres Iniesta following Michael Essien's early strike.
Terry said: "Why did we get a referee who has officiated in 10 games in the Champions League in his career? To be given the Champions League semi-final, that's not good enough."
He added: "Over two legs Barcelona played well but the fact is that, in this game, we had six or seven penalty claims waved away and that is astonishing. Anywhere else, anywhere else in the world that would not happen.
"You can see he might not have given the first one, but come the second where Nicolas Anelka puts it round Gerard Pique and he slams it down with his hand?
"It's decisions like that which are wrong -- Darren Fletcher misses the final after being sent-off for Manchester United on Tuesday, a bad decision.
"He can't play in the final and neither can we, because of a bad decision in this match."
Terry would not accuse UEFA of a conspiracy to deny the London side a repeat of last year's final against United but he lashed out at the governing body for appointing such an inexperienced referee.
"The word conspiracy is maybe the wrong one," said Terry. "It's difficult when players are so high on emotion after a game. However, people are saying we shouldn't have reacted the way we did.
"But the fact is, six decisions went against us in front of 40,000 people. And for the ref to not give one of them is unusual. So it's not surprising for us to come off the field and show that emotion."
Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms