Ghana coach Otto Addo believes the penalty awarded to Portugal in the two teams’ World Cup 2022 Group H clash, which ended 3-2 in favour of the Euro 2016 champions, was a gift.
With the contest goalless just after the hour mark, Mohammed Salisu was adjudged to have fouled Cristiano Ronaldo in the box and American referee Ismaeli Elfath awarded a penalty to Portugal.
Despite the decision being a contested one, the referee did not consult the video assistant referee (VAR) and Ronaldo stepped up to score his 118th international goal —becoming the first player to score at five different World Cup finals in the process.
Addo though, was not happy with the decision and said it was incorrect.
“It was really a wrong decision. We played the ball. I don’t know why VAR didn’t come up. There is no explanation for me,” Addo said in his post-match interview.
“The referee was not in our favour. If somebody scores a goal, congratulations. But this was really a gift.
“I think you have to ask the referee. I have no proof of that. We were playing the ball and then there was contact.
The Borussia Dortmund assistant coach said he even approached officials from FIFA to seek clarity from the referee, to no avail.
“I tried and asked some people from FIFA if I could speak to the referee in a calm and quiet way. They said he was in a meeting and not possible,” said Addo.
“I think they have match analysis and an instructor. Surely you could have some minutes for the coach,” he added.