Former Serie A referee Graziano Cesari feels that AC Milan should have been awarded a penalty for the challenge by Inter defender Milan Skriniar on Olivier Giroud yesterday evening.
Speaking to Italian broadcaster SportMediaset after the match, the former official gave the view that the Slovak’s challenge was a foul, while he also noted that the yellow card to Lautaro Martinez for his challenge on Milan keeper Mike Maignan was the correct decision.
Referee Maurizio Mariani did not have that many incidents to deal with in yesterday’s Coppa Italia semi-final first leg, though each team did have a penalty appeal.
Towards the end of the first half, Nerazzurri midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu appealed for a penalty after a tangle with Milan’s Alexis Saelemaekers, whilst the contact between Skriniar and Girous came in the second half.
Cesari weighed in on both incidents, stating that “Mariani has a good view of the contact between Calhanoglu and Saelemaekers in the Milan area, it is the Turk who commits the foul, the referee is perfect there.”
About the challenge between Skriniar and Giroud, he stated that “In this case he is in a perpendicular position. Skriniar ignores the ball and almost immobilizes Giroud, collapsing onto him.”
“In my opinion he had to be punished more harshly,” he said.
And regarding the yellow card received by Martinez for a heavy follow-through on Maignan, he stated that “Lautaro looks at the ball. We have to ask ourselves, could he hurdle over the goalkeeper or not?”
“In these situations I always give the benefit of the doubt, so I think the yellow card is correct,” he concluded, suggesting that a straight red would be too harsh for the striker.