under-fire referee speaks out

Ref Ovrebo admits to goal mistake

February 18, 2010
By Soccernet staff

Referee Tom Henning Ovrebro has admitted he should have ruled out Miroslav Klose's last-minute winner in Bayern Munich's Champions League victory over Fiorentina on Wednesday.

Tom Henning Ovrebo:
GettyImagesTom Henning Ovrebo: Criticised for decisions in the Bayern Munich v Fiorentina encounter

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Bayern Munich 2-1 Fiorentina
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• Italian football chief blasts Ovrebo

Ovrebro's performance was roundly criticised after he harshly sent off Massimo Gobbi for an innocuous-looking tackle before allowing Klose to remain on the field for what appeared a much more dangerous challenge.

To rub salt into the Fiorentina wounds, it was Klose who nodded in the last-minute winner while clearly offside and the Norwegian referee admits he should not have allowed the goal to stand.

"Based on the pictures and the feedback we've received, it's clear we should have realised it was offside,'' Ovrebro told Norwegian television channel TV2. "But we unfortunately did not realise that on the pitch. Based on the advice I got from my assistant, I chose to approve the goal - and it is my responsibility.

"I always get just the advice of an assistant referee but I make a final decision. But the pictures later show that it was perhaps not so wise''

Ovrebro has faced widespread criticism for decisions in previous matches and received death threats last year after a number of controversial decisions in Chelsea's semi-final defeat by Barcelona in the same competition.

He has once again become the focus of attention but is refusing to speculate on whether his refereeing future could be examined by UEFA.

"It's hard to say,'' he added. "It's up to UEFA to consider. "We take the games we get. Then UEFA assess whether we are good enough for new duties.''