Champions League

Malaga: We were 'expelled' from Europe

April 11, 2013
By Dermot Corrigan, Spain Correspondent

Malaga vice-president Moayad Shatat says his club were "expelled" from Europe, not beaten on the pitch, in Tuesday's Champions League quarter-final second leg at Borussia Dortmund.

Malaga players react to losing 3-2 to Dortmund
GettyImages / PATRIK STOLLARZMalaga players react to losing 3-2 to Dortmund

The Qatari-backed club appeared to be heading through to the semis when leading 2-1 at the Westfalenstadion, but two late Dortmund goals - the second of which looked offside - broke their hearts.

This resulted in an outpouring of criticism of the performance of Scottish referee Craig Thomson, led by coach Manuel Pellegrini at the post-game press conference and Malaga's players in the Spanish media.

Club owner Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Al-Thani went much further by accusing UEFA, via Twitter, of being "racist and corrupt" and deliberately ensuring his team were knocked out.

Shatat, the highest-ranking Qatari who actually spends time on the Costa del Sol, echoed his boss' thoughts on the game.

"We do not feel as if we were knocked out, but as if we have been expelled from the competition," Shatat told Diario Sur. "We will present a complaint to UEFA as we do not feel the refereeing was of the standard expected in the competition."

There was no fear of Al-Thani, who first poured over €200 million into the club but then abruptly withdrew financial support about 12 months ago, immediately walking away from Malaga, Shatat said.

"About everything that has been said, the only certainty is that Malaga will keep moving forward and grow even more," he said. "This has not ended here."

Los Boquerones could have made it all the way to May's Champions League final had they not been prevented, Shatat said.

"Despite the frustration and impotence, we feel very proud of the squad and coaching staff," he said. "There are no words to describe what they have achieved. We had full confidence in their ability to go all the way to the final at Wembley."