Real Madrid news

Di Maria feels Real face unfair treatment

April 10, 2013
By Dermot Corrigan, Spain Correspondent

Angel Di Maria suggested referees were out to get Real Madrid after Alvaro Arbeloa was sent off during the 3-2 Champions League quarter-final second-leg defeat at Galatasaray - a result that still saw Jose Mourinho's side progressing 5-3 on aggregate.

Alvaro Arbeloa gets his marching orders for dissent towards the referee
GettyImagesAlvaro Arbeloa gets his marching orders for dissent towards the referee

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Arbeloa was booked twice in quick succession in the second half of the game by referee Stephanne Lanoy, first for a foul on Nordin Amrabaat and then for appearing to gesture that the official was crazy by pointing to the side of his forehead.

Madrid have seen a string of players sent off in recent months, with both Di Maria and Arbeloa seeing red in La Liga in 2013. The Argentine winger told reporters after the game at the Turk Telecom Arena that the decision was harsh, especially considering Galatasaray's physical approach.

"For one thing or another we always end up having a player sent off," Di Maria said. "They were the ones who spent the whole game kicking us."

Arbeloa's likely suspension for Madrid's semi-final will be a further headache for Mourinho. The right-back had entered the pitch in the first half when starter Michael Essien had gone off with a calf injury, and initial reports suggest the on-loan Chelsea man is a doubt for the next round.

Asked who he would like to face in the semis - perhaps La Liga rivals Barcelona or Borussia Dortmund, whom Madrid already faced in this season's group stages - Di Maria said he had no preference.

"To win the Champions League you must beat all the other teams," he said. "We have already said we will have to win against whoever we get in order to make the final."