London, Oct.11 (ANI): England football team coach Fabio Capello angrily confronted Slovenian referee Damir Skomina on the way into the tunnel after the game against Ukraine was stopped three times as fans threw a barrage of flares on to the pitch.
Capello complained bitterly about Skomina's controversial display that saw the dramatic sending off of Rob Green after just 14 minutes of play. Green was the first England keeper ever to be dismissed during a match.
Green, who plays for West Ham, seemed to be the target of the flaming missiles during the World Cup qualifier at the Dnipro stadium. He was forced to take refuge outside of his area as flares descended from the stand behind goal.
Skomina was forced to halt play, as up to a dozen flares, some still burning, had to be cleared from the box by stewards before play could continue some two minutes later. But it was only a temporary reprieve as more flares rained down again, twice stopping the game again as the emergency services tried to douse the flames.
The second time it was to greet sub David James, thrown into the action after Green had been sent off for felling Artem Milevskiy in the area after a howler from Rio Ferdinand.
Skomina had wrongly shown the red card to Ferdinand until his mistake was pointed out to him. nd then there was a third attack from the stands when the home side took the lead in the 29th minute.
Angry boss Capello said: "I spoke to the referee because of the way he showed a red card to Rio Ferdinand. I believe this is a big mistake from the referee. He showed it to Rio even though he was standing up and Robert Green was diving."
"When it happened, the fourth official said 'Don't worry, I will speak to the referee'. The big question therefore is the referee could not have seen the incident properly and that's why I spoke to him.
"I wasn't unhappy with Rio.We only made one mistake in defence, the other was a deflection.
"As for all the flares, we were not happy," The News of The World quoted Capello, as saying.
Capello added: "I'm proud of my team because of the way we played in the second half and created chances to draw. We even almost scored in the 93rd minute."
The FA made an immediate complaint to FIFA after the final whistle and they are sure to take action against the Ukrainians for the lunacy of their fanatical supporters. (ANI)