Former Premier League referee Graham Poll insists referee Jonas Eriksson made the right call in awarding Barcelona a penalty and sending off Manchester City defender Martin Demichelis last night, reports the Daily Mail.
Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini was furious with the incident that occurred in the 52nd minute, and contributed heavily to a 2-0 defeat he felt his team did not deserve.
But Poll believes the referee got the major decision correct, despite Pellegrini’s insistence he made a major mistake in a crucial game.
“Barcelona’s penalty was rightly awarded,” said Poll.
“Perhaps referee Jonas Eriksson missed a foul by Sergio Busquets on Jesus Navas before the Barca attack, but these things happen in football.
“What cannot be disputed is that Martin Demichelis fouled Lionel Messi fully in the knowledge that the Argentine was through and would most likely have scored. It was a clear red card.
“There was a question over the exact position of the foul. I was taught that experienced defenders make last ditch tackles knowing they are just outside the area.
“However, in my opinion contact continued until at least the line marking the penalty area and further, meaning awarding a penalty was a correct decision.”