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Referee was hard on us, says Angola coach

Written by: Staff

HANOVER, June 17 (Reuters) Angola coach Luis Oliveira Goncalves said Singaporean referee Shamsul Maidin was hard on his team in the 0-0 World Cup Group D with Mexico yesterday.

Angola midfielder Andre Macanga was sent off in the 79th minute for a second bookable offence. Five players from the African team were also shown the yellow card.

''In some cases, the referee was a bit harsh,'' Goncalves told reporters.

''FIFA decided the stars had to be protected and we have our stars and they are not protected. But we now have to be able to manage our yellow cards.'' Goncalves said his team were not overly physical.

''We, as a rule, are not harsh or hard players,'' he said.

The coach was proud of his side's display against Mexico, who are ranked fourth in the world.

''We laid down a strategy not to concede goals,'' said Goncalves. ''In the second half we gave our best and lost a man.

''To play with 11 was hard but with 10 it was even harder. It was a battling performance.'' REUTERS DH RAI0533

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