Dutch referee Danny Makkelie has apologized to Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal after disallowing the striker’s goal against Serbia.
Portugal had to settle for a 2-2 draw in their 2022 World Cup qualifying clash after Ronaldo was denied a last-gasp winner by the match officials.
Replays showed that the Juventus striker’s shot had crossed the line before Aleksandar Mitrovic was able to clear the ball away, but Makkelie waved play on after consulting with his linesman, which he has now admitted was the wrong decision.
“As per FIFA’s policies, all I can say is that I apologised to the national coach, Fernando Santos, and to the Portuguese team for what happened,” Makkelie told Portuguese publication A Bola. “As a referee team, we always work hard to make good decisions. When we are in the news in this manner, it doesn’t make us happy at all.”
Ronaldo was furious after seeing his goal chalked off, having produced an finish after latching onto a perfectly flighted Nuno Mendes pass.
There were still a few seconds left to play after the stoppage time incident, but the Portugal captain refused to continue after remonstrating with the linesman.
Ronaldo threw his armband to the ground before storming down the tunnel, and explained his reaction in a social media post after the game.