Ligue 1 news

Antonetti blasts Nice 'cheats'

December 12, 2012
By Ian Holyman, France Correspondent

Rennes coach Frederic Antonetti was incandescent following his team's 1-0 defeat to Nice on Tuesday, claiming "the cheats won and it disgusts me".

Frederic Antonetti
PA PhotosFrederic Antonetti understands the fans' frustrations

Rennes could have moved up to third place in the Ligue 1 table with victory on the south coast, but instead saw their hosts inch ahead of them courtesy of Dario Cvitanich's 66th-minute penalty.

The spot-kick arose from a foul by Yassine Jebbour on Eric Bautheac, a push in the back additionally sanctioned with a red card by referee Nicolas Rainville, who had already sent off Rennes centre-back Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik for a second bookable offence early in the second half.

"I've seen the pictures and talked to the referee," Antonetti said. "The first yellow card isn't one - it was down to cheating. The second one, perhaps, but then there wouldn't have been the red.

"And then there's Bautheac's swallow dive - the referee was conned. The pictures speak for themselves. Tonight, the cheats won and it disgusts me. Winning like that doesn't interest me in the slightest."

While Nice coach Claude Puel highlighted "some tackles on Dario [Cvitanich] which were rough", Bautheac defended himself against suggestions theatrics had played a part in giving Nice a fifth win in a seven-game unbeaten run that has hoisted them into seventh place.

"I was under the cross. I jumped, and I don't know whether I could have got to it, but I felt a hand on my back which knocked me off balance," the former Dijon midfielder said, before taking to his Twitter account, tweeting: "Did you see a negative reaction from Jebbour? No. He went off without saying anything because he knows he pushed me."