London, May 7 (ANI): Chelsea striker Didier Drogba faces a big UEFA ban after he hurled an F-word tirade at Norwegian referee Tom Henning Ovrebo as Barcelona hit a 93rd-minute goal to reach the Champions League final.
Millions of stunned TV viewers saw Drogba square up to the ref on the pitch after he had rejected four penalty appeals.
Drogba screamed obscenities at the TV cameras, forcing Sky to issue a rushed apology. Then the Ivory Coast star stormed down the tunnel and hurled abuse at Ovrebo, The Sun reports.
An eyewitness said: "Drogba was coming down the tunnel with referee Ovrebo alongside him. He kept shouting at Henning and the referee stopped." Drogba turned towards the ref and put his face just three or four inches from the ref's face and kept shouting. He told the ref 'This is a f***ing disgrace, you don't have respect, something like that can't happen. You can't do that'.
"All the time he used his hand to intimidate the ref further. He kept slamming his hand to the wall just inches from the ref's face. Ovrebo looked terrified - but never said anything," the eyewitness added.
Chelsea star Michael Ballack then joined in until the terrified referee ran back on to the pitch to avoid more confrontation.
The eyewitness also added: "Drogba looked crazy. He had lost control. But he never laid a finger on the ref, even though his behaviour was anything but civil."
Last night Ovrebo admitted to UEFA representatives at the match that he had made "significant mistakes" during the game. But Drogba's behaviour is certain to trigger a UEFA probe.
Chelsea boss Guus Hiddink defended the disgraceful reaction of his players. "I can fully understand the emotion of the game, the players' disappointment. It's not just one decision made in doubt but several decisions." (ANI)