Bayern Munich took on Real Madrid in the Spanish capital on Tuesday in a memorable quarterfinal second leg of the UEFA Champions League. The game had everything one could wish for, except good officiating.
It went back and forth and into extra time, before the crew of otherwise widely-respected Hungarian referee Victor Kassai took Real over the top.
After last week’s 2-1 defeat at home, the Bavarians had a long way to go, to come back from the deficit.
The first half in Madrid produced several chances at both ends, but no goals.
Bayern Munich controlled most of the second half and forced their opponents into defensive errors.
A foul by Casemiro on Arjen Robben in the penalty area, sent Robert Lewandowski to the spot, 1-0 Bayern early in the second half. The Bavarians needed at least another goal to advance and pushed forward accordingly.
However, the next goal came from Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo, before the captain of Madrid Sergio Ramos scored an own goal, making it 2-1 Bayern and sending the match into extra time.
Despite the harsh dismissal of Bayern’s Arturo Vidal, that left his team with ten men late in regulation time, it was the Munich side that seemed more likely to score in the following minutes.
Instead, it was Ronaldo who scored two given goals from offside positions and Marco Asensio who also struck to make it a 4-2 final score for Madrid.
Apart from the sending off for Vidal and two incorrect goals by Ronaldo, there were other key mistakes that referee Kassai and his crew made in favor of the home team.
Soon after having scored the opening goal, Lewandowski had a fantastic chance to make it 2-0, as he was in on goal, but wrongly flagged offside. Furthermore, Casemiro was allowed to stay in the game, despite a number of fouls he made after having been booked.
The officials clearly ruined an otherwise fantastic game, which makes the case for video refereeing. The knockout stage of the Champions League is far too important to be left subject to human error.