Emma Hayes, filled with anger, vented her annoyance towards the referees following Chelsea’s inability to secure a win against Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League. The team settled for a 2-2 draw at Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano, as defender Niamh Charles had her goal disallowed due to an offside call right before the game ended.
The Chelsea manager, Hayes, criticized the officiating, deeming it “shameful” and believing that her team had been unfairly deprived of a victory. Hayes expressed doubts about the decision to invalidate Charles’ goal, asserting that it was a valid goal and that there was no involvement from striker Sam Kerr, who was far away from the goalkeeper.
“I believe we have been deprived of a 3-1 game,” Hayes stated. “I believed we had command over the game after the initial goal. I thought we completely dominated the game. We took the lead at 2-1, and then there was a free kick that resulted in a penalty. After that, we scored a genuinely legitimate goal with Niamh Charles, who was clearly three or four yards onside.” In addition to the disallowed goal, there were other contentious decisions during the game. Real Madrid initially took the lead with Olga Carmona’s goal, but Chelsea quickly responded with goals from Charles and Kerr, putting them ahead at 2-1. However, only four minutes later, Real Madrid were given a penalty when Athenea del Castillo fell in the penalty area. Hayes claimed that the initial contact from Jessie Fleming’s tackle actually happened outside the penalty area, which I could clearly observe from the sidelines. I’m completely astonished that the game’s organizers failed to notice this. Although it’s possible that Jessie shouldn’t have made a sudden movement in that specific region, it’s evident that it occurred outside the penalty area.
As a result, both teams commenced their Champions League journey with one point each. Meanwhile, Hacken, a Swedish team, currently holds the top position in the group following their 2-1 triumph against Paris FC in France.