A frustrated Neil Lennon has vented his fury at Spanish referee Alberto Undiano Mallenco for his lack of awareness in marking situations during Celtic’s Champions League game with Juventus on Tuesday night.
Referee Mallenco decided to allow a variety of incidents go through without any sanctions, although constant offender Stephan Lichtsteiner and substitute Simone Padoin were both booked before corners, along with Celtic’s Gary Hooper and skipper Scott Brown.
Ultimately it was soft goals given away by the hosts that cost them the game, as Alessandro Matri, Claudio Marchisio and Mirko Vucinic found the target in an impressive 3-0 victory at Parkhead for the Italians, making Celtic’s second leg job look all but impossible to achieve.
A disappointed Lennon said afterwards: “I would like to ask the Italian journalists what they made of the way Juventus marked our players.
“It looked to me as if they were fouling at every opportunity. The referee was warned by our players to keep an eye on it but he ignored our requests time and again.
“Are the rules different in Spain and Italy to what they are in Britain? On that showing they must be.”
The second leg will be played in Turin in three weeks’ time, with Juve huge favourites to reach the last eight for the first time in this competition since 2006.
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