Ancelotti: Vinicius unfairly punished by La Liga referees

Carlo Ancelotti says the referees were too quick to book Vinicius Jr after he picked up his 10th yellow card of the Brazil Forward League season in Real Madrid’s 4-2 win over Almería on Saturday.

Karim Benzema scored a hat-trick at the Santiago Bernabeu — Vinicius provided the assist for his opener — and Rodrigo Goss added a fourth as Madrid bounced back from their midweek defeat at Girona on the same scoreline.

– Stream on ESPN+: La Liga, Bundesliga, more (US)
– Kirkland: Madrid bounce back as Benzema rewrites record books

Vinicius received a yellow card in the 37th minute, as referee Guillermo Cuadra Fernández took issue with his reaction to a clumsy challenge by Almeria defender Haubulang Mendes.

“It’s amazing that he’s got 10 yellow cards this season,” coach Ancelotti said at the post-match press conference. “The dirtiest midfielder in the league doesn’t have 10 cards! [Vinicius] Has to improve, but he’s been carded too much and not enough for the kicks he’s got.”

Ancelotti went on to suggest that Vinicius’ often vocal complaints about the treatment he receives from opponents can influence referees’ decision-making.

“A complaint is a yellow card. But the referee is like a judge, that complaint has no effect,” said Ancelotti. “The referee has to be very focused on the game. One complaint cannot affect what happens next. A referee cannot award something because Vinicius complained.”

Madrid’s front three of Benzema, Vinicius and Rodrigo impressed against Almeria, contributing all four goals, and Ancelotti was asked how they compared to the club’s legendary trio of Benzema, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo, who he coached from 2013 to 2015.

“It’s a good question,” Ancelotti said. “They are similar in skill and quality. They have different characteristics, they are different but they are similar in skill. The 2014 trio was very dangerous and this trio is very dangerous.”

They travel to Real Sociedad in La Liga on Tuesday before their Copa del Rey final against Osasuna in Seville next Saturday, and the first leg of their Champions League semi-final against Manchester City three days later.

“We rested [Federico] At Valverde today, he had a knock,” Ancelotti said. “We rested [Dani] Carvajal. Little by little, I am thinking of resting the players. Tuesday’s game is important and I will rest the tired players.”

Leave a Comment