UEFA look into Pellegrini's post-match comments

Last Updated: Thu, 20 Feb 2014 17:10
Manchester%20City

Manuel Pellegrini could face action from UEFA over his comments following Manchester City's 2-0 Champions League defeat to Barcelona.

Pellegrini strongly criticised Swedish referee Jonas Eriksson and appeared to question his impartiality after a match which turned on the decision to award Barca a penalty and send off City defender Martin Demichelis in the 54th minute.

"UEFA has mandated a disciplinary inspector to commence an investigation concerning the press interviews given by the Manchester City FC head coach Manuel Luis Pellegrini to media after the above-mentioned match," a UEFA statement said.

"Based on the outcome of this investigation, a decision will be taken on whether disciplinary proceedings will be opened."

Speaking after Tuesday night's match, Pellegrini said: "From the beginning I felt the referee was not impartial to both teams.

"I think it was not a good idea to put a referee from Sweden in charge of such an important match, especially a referee who has made an important mistake against Barcelona in a previous match.

"[It's] more important football in Europe than Sweden. A big game with two important teams, that kind of game needs a referee with more experience."

Eriksson has been selected by FIFA to referee at the World Cup finals in Brazil this summer, and the world governing body's referees chief has already dismissed Pellegrini's comments.

"I read the remarks that were made by the Manchester City manager," said Jim Boyce, a FIFA vice-president from Northern Ireland.

"I saw the game and my own personal opinion is that I thought the referee had a good game. He is a very experienced referee who has been chosen for the World Cup because of excellent reports of his performances in Europe."

Demichelis was sent off for a foul on Lionel Messi when the Argentinian forward was through on goal.

Replays suggest the incident was just outside the box, but a penalty was awarded which Messi scored. Barca then grabbed a late, and potentially decisive, second late in the game through Dani Alves.

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