Guangzhou Evergrande coach Marcello Lippi erupts following ACL defeat to Western Sydney Wanderers

August 21, 2014 – 5:53AM

Dominic Bossi

Sports reporter

Guangzhou Evergrande coach Marcello Lippi sensationally stormed out of a media conference following their shock 1-0 loss to Western Sydney Wanderers but not before unleashing a heated attack towards the referee and Wanderers’ midfielder Vitor Saba.

The first-leg quarter-final defeat to the Wanderers at Pirtek Stadium will go down as an historic moment for the 66-year-old World Cup and Serie A winning coach who ran on to the field to protest the dismissal of two of his players in the late stages of the game before erupting in the post-match press conference, attacking Emirati referee Mohammed Abdulla Hassan Mohamed.

Marcello Lippi has to be held back after his side received their second red card.

Marcello Lippi has to be held back after his side received their second red card. Photo: Brendan Esposito

The Italian coach did not hide his anger as he ranted to the media about his dismay at the officiating of the match and the behaviour of some of the Wanderers’ players before walking out of the press conference without fielding a single question, leaving his two translators to relay his tirade.

Lippi criticised the referee for missing an alleged hand-ball in the box in the first half that would’ve given the reigning champions an early penalty as well as another foul by Daniel Mullen that he believes should have warranted a second yellow-card. Mohamed awarded Evergrande the foul but gave Mullen a talking-to rather than a dismissal.

“To be honest the first was a little bit far away but the second [red card] was really close to me so I saw it. I also saw that in the during of the match number 33 [Mullen] had to go for a second yellow card…. But I don’t know why the referee didn’t see this. Also in the first half we had a good chance to score and there was a handball in the opening and also the referee didn’t see it,” Lippi said.

Disbelief: Guangzhou Evergrande react to one of the red cards.

Disbelief: Guangzhou Evergrande react to one of the red cards. Photo: Brendan Esposito

“I’ve been in every competition in the world – the World Cup, European Champions League, Club World Championships – everything. I know it’s wrong to go on the field, but at the first moment I just wanted to ask the referee why  – But he talked to me like a child – I also tried to apologised to the ref, I knocked on the door [after the game] and I tried to say it wasn’t in protest, I wanted information on this.”

Lippi was critical of the Wanderers new Brazilian playmaker, Vitor Saba, who he accused of diving. Lippi was seen to have grabbed hold of Saba during a chaotic on-field protest involving the entire Guangzhou Evergrande bench.

“Number 10 with the beard, he played in Italy. It’s not good in football to be falling down and to be so fake, not in the champions league,” Lippi said.

Wanderers coach Tony Popovic was puzzled when he heard of Lippi’s tirade, saying his opponent had nothing to complain about.

“I don’t know what he’s upset about,” he said. “That’s his interpretation but the referee has made a decision. Their coaches can not go on the pitch, I’m sure if I went on the pitch I would’ve been sent off so I can’t condone their coaches going on the pitch. We all disagree with decisions that referees make, we voice our opinion from the sideline but we don’t go on the pitch and man-handle a player.”

Meanwhile, the Wanderers are expected to announce their fifth and final visa-player for next year with the signing of Nigerian left-back Seyi Adeleke set to be confirmed on Thursday.

The signing of the 22-year-old defender effectively ends any chances of the club signing a high-profile foreign marquee to replace Shinji Ono.

Adeleke arrives from Serie A club Lazio where he spent three seasons but did not make a senior appearance as he spent the bulk of his career loaned out to smaller clubs. He spent two seasons in the lower leagues of Italy with Salernitana and Pergolettese as well as a season in Switzerland with FC Biel-Bienne.

Source : The Sydney Morning Herald

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