By Robbie Blakeley, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Flamengo beat Vasco 2-1 with a late goal at the Maracanã Stadium yesterday afternoon in the eighth round of the Campeonato Carioca. However, the game was shrouded in controversy after the game’s officials failed to award Vasco a clear goal in the first half.
Douglas’ curling free-kick cleared the goal line by 33cm and was visible to the naked eye. Amazingly, the referee and linesman contrived to miss the fact and failed to rule a Vasco goal, leading to fury and revulsion amongst the players.
At the half-time whistle, with the score at 1-1, the entire Vasco team attempted to surround the referee to make their views heard. Security was forced to form a barrier in front of the officials as anger threatened to spill over.
“This [Flamengo v Vasco] is such a great game to play in, then the referee comes and does something like that. The referee apologized. How exactly?” said Vasco striker Edmílson at the final whistle. Victory for Flamengo took them level with Fluminense at the top of the Carioca table. Both sides have nineteen points from eight games.
It was Vasco who went in front yesterday through Fellipe Bastos on 36 minutes. However, it took Flamengo just three minutes to restore parity in another hotly contested move.
Elano curled a free-kick over the wall and towards the top left-hand corner. Vasco keeper Martin Silva clawed the ball away but the official by the goal ruled the ball had crossed the line.
TV replays showed he had made the right call, yet that did little to quell Vasco’s anger. Perhaps distracted after the events of the first half, Vasco did not manage to play with the same intensity during the second half.
Douglas, who had an excellent game, gave way for Bernardo but Vasco still could not get a stranglehold on the game. They were punished in the cruelest of ways on 89 minutes. Gabriel’s shot from the edge of the area took a slight deflection off Guiñazu and ended up in the back of the net.
Campeonato Carioca Round Eight Results in Full:
Macaé 0-0 Nova Iguaçu
Friburguense 3-0 Audax
Volta Redonda 1-0 Madureira
Fluminense 4-1 Boavista
Cabofriense 1-0 Resende
Vasco 1-2 Flamengo
Bonsucesso 0-1 Bangu
Duque de Caxias 1-2 Botafogo
Read more (in Portuguese).
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