Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman blasted match referee Carlos del Cerro Grande after receiving a red card during his side’s 0-0 draw with Cadiz, claiming: “In this country, they send you off for nothing!”
Barca extended their recent winless run to three matches in all competitions after a stalemate at Estadio Nuevo Mirandilla on Thursday night.
Frenkie de Jong was sent off midway through the second half for two bookable offences, and Koeman received his marching orders in stoppage time for dissent to compound a miserable night for the Blaugrana.
Koeman was shown a red card in the dying moments of the match after protesting the referee’s decision to show Sergio Busquets a yellow for kicking the ball away.
There were two balls on the pitch at the time and the Spaniard passed one of them at a Cadiz player who had the other ball, with Koeman’s complaints earning him a one-way ticket to the stands.
What’s been said?
The Dutch head coach expressed his frustration over the referee’s controversial call while speaking to Barca TV after the final whistle, saying: “They didn’t send me off for nervousness, they sent me off for telling the referee that there was a second ball and the game had to be stopped.
“In this country, they send you off for nothing! I asked why and he said ‘attitude, attitude’ … we better leave it.”
Barca lose more ground in La Liga
Pressure is likely to increase on Koeman after another significant setback in La Liga that has left Barca seven points behind leaders Real Madrid in the standings having played one game less.
The Blaugrana had plenty of chances to see off Cadiz, with Memphis Depay the man most guilty of wasteful finishing as he failed to convert twice from close range, but they were also fortunate not to lose as the hosts dominated the final stages due to their numerical advantage.
Sergi Roberto, who played 45 minutes after coming on as a half-time substitute, was left disappointed by the final result, but still feels Barca have enough quality in their ranks to bounce back and compete for the domestic crown.
“We have to win La Liga. It is not good enough for us to enter the top four, you have to fight for La Liga,” the 29-year-old told Movistar post-match. “I don’t think the other teams have a better squad.”