ANI Photo | Unacceptable to have an Argentine referee: Pepe on Portugal’s FIFA World Cup exit

After Portugal’s World Cup elimination, Pepe let his frustrations out, directing much of it towards a referee he feels shouldn’t have been chosen.
Morocco scripted history on Saturday to become the first African nation to qualify for the last four of the World Cup after defeating Portugal 1-0 in the quarterfinal.
Portugal didn’t leave without a fight, the team’s centre-back Pepe expressed his anger at the match being officiated by Argentine referee Facundo Tello, allegedly because of the rivalry between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo (though his reasoning was not immediately clear).
“It was unacceptable to have an Argentine referee refereeing the game, after yesterday, with Messi talking, an Argentine comes and whistles,” Skysports quoted Pepe as saying.
“In the second half, nothing was given, there were only eight minutes [of stoppage time]. We worked very hard, eight minutes, nothing was played. In the second half, we just wanted to play. We are sad, we had the quality to win, unfortunately we didn’t manage to do it,” he further added.

Coming to the historic match, the African nation staged a massive upset to knock Portugal out of the World Cup as they held onto their one-goal lead at halftime to book a maiden slot in the FIFA World Cup semifinals. A resilient Morocco found the back of the net through Youssef El-Nesyri in the 42nd minute.
The forward went airborne and headed the cross from Attiyat Allah to give his side the advantage which proved fatal for Portugal.
Morocco bettered their record against Portugal after the win having won two of their three matches. The loss for Portugal will be very disappointing for Ronaldo who has probably played his last World Cup given his age.
Cristiano Ronaldo, who came on as a second-half substitute, was unable to make a difference. The forward left the pitch in tears with his World Cup dream ending in this edition.
Morocco overcame expectations and challenges to reach the semi-finals, defeating Croatia, Belgium, Spain, and now Portugal. The Atlas Lions are now two steps away from glory. Portugal went all out but Morocco overcame tiredness, injury, and nervousness in the knockout game to earn a remarkable victory. The team held the European side for a memorable win. (ANI)

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