Football

Julius Aghahowa rips referee for Portugal penalty vs. Ghana

Ghana's Mohammed Salisu fouls in the penalty box Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo during a World Cup group H soccer match at the Stadium 974 in Doha, Qatar, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022. (AP Photo-Manu Fernandez)

Julius Aghahowa, a former striker for the Super Eagles, has criticised the referee in Ghana’s World Cup match against Portugal for giving Portugal a controversial penalty.

In the 65th minute, Portugal took the lead when Cristiano Ronaldo converted a penalty kick after Muhammed Salisu was called for a foul.

Felix and Rafael Leao put Portugal up 3-1 before Andre Ayew scored an equaliser for Ghana.

However, a goal scored by substitute Osman Bukari with a minute remaining proved to be in vain for Ghana.

And Aghahowa said the referee’s decision to award the penalty is arguable in his commentary.

Aghahowa said on Brila FM that Ghana was “demoralised” by the penalty awarded to Portugal.

“The referee should have gone to the monitor to confirm that it was a penalty. He didn’t, and that affected the Ghanaians.

“The penalty is contestable. My problem with that is the ref didn’t even go to check.

“But thankfully, they scored two goals and spiritedly went for the third and should motivate the team.”

Also, Alidu Seidu was almost sent off the field after reacting to Joao Felix’s provocation.

“Alidu Seidu’s action was uncalled for. He could have been sent off for that, and his team will suffer. African players have to be disciplined at this level.”