Ferdinand points finger at referee

13 October 2010 07:26
England captain Rio Ferdinand accused German official Manuel Grafe of falling below the standards expected of an international referee following the goalless European Championship qualifier against Montenegro. Grafe turned down two second-half penalty appeals from England during Tuesday's Wembley stalemate. He first booked Ashley Young for diving in the box before earning the wrath of the home fans and the England players when he waved play on after defender Milan Jovanovic clearly handled the ball in the penalty area. "It was just disappointing really," said Ferdinand. "You expect the referees to be able to be up with play and performing at the highest level. Today, we just didn't get that. "When you're playing at international level, you've got to deal with situations that come about. "Today we had two really good shouts for a penalty and we didn't get them." Vice-captain Steven Gerrard, who Ferdinand replaced as skipper following his return to fitness, was similarly scathing of the match official. "I saw the handball incident very clearly and the referee was really close," he explained. "I was very surprised that he never saw it but even more surprised that the linesman hasn't seen it because it's on his side. "At this level you need that little bit of luck, especially when things are difficult and you're finding it hard to break the opposition down."

Source: ESA

World Cup Group G

Pos Team Pld Pts
- Belgium 0 0
- Panama 0 0
- Tunisia 0 0
- England 0 0