Valencia 2-2 Draw with Real MadridValencia 2-2 Draw with Real Madrid

Carlo Ancelotti expressed his disbelief over what he termed an “unprecedented” refereeing decision that negated Jude Bellingham’s potential last-second winning goal in Real Madrid’s 2-2 draw against Valencia on Saturday.

At Mestalla, Valencia secured a 2-0 lead within the first half-hour through goals from Hugo Duro and Roman Yaremchuk. Vinícius Júnior’s double, notably scoring at the same stadium where he faced racial abuse last season, saw Madrid level the score.

In an exhilarating moment, Bellingham believed he secured all three points by heading Brahim Díaz’s cross into the net during the ninth minute of added time. However, referee Jesús Gil Manzano chose to conclude the match with the ball in the air.

Bellingham’s disallowed goal led to his dismissal for disputing the decision, with the referee’s report citing an “aggressive attitude” and the repeated use of explicit language to express his frustration, including shouting “it’s a f—ing goal.”

Ancelotti said after the game, “There’s not much to say. Something really unusual happened. We had control of the ball, and usually, the game stops when the other team has it. This has never happened to me before.

“We were not happy about Bellingham’s red card. He didn’t use any bad words. He just said in English, ‘It’s a f—ing goal,’ but he was just expressing what we were all thinking… [The referee] let the game continue. I believe he made a mistake.”

“Bellingham was clear about what he said,” Ancelotti added. “He was quite forceful in his reaction, but that’s normal, given what happened. It wasn’t an insult at all.”

Real Madrid is now seven points ahead at the top of the LaLiga table, with Girona and Barcelona, their closest rivals, set to play on Sunday.

“We’ll check the standings, and we’ll rest well,” Ancelotti mentioned.

Vinícius scored two goals, making a comeback after being sent off in the same match in May 2023. During that game, he faced racial abuse from some fans. Three individuals have been accused of making racial insults, and Vinícius provided evidence via video last October.

“It was a really tough game,” Vinícius said on Saturday to Real Madrid TV. “Playing away from home is always tough. After letting in two goals, we managed to even the score. In the end, we couldn’t win because they didn’t allow us.”

Madrid moved to 66 points in the standings, seven points ahead of second-placed Girona, who have a game in hand at Mallorca on Sunday. Barcelona are third on 57 points. 

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By Jammy

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