Cristiano Ronaldo took up his goals tally for the World Cup to 4 after scoring the solitary goal during Portugal’s 1-0 victory over Morocco. And with that, the Real Madrid star became the highest scoring European in the history of international football.
While the whole footballing world has been going ga-ga over the Portuguese it seems like even the World Cup referees are not immune from it.
After Portugal’s win versus Morocco, midfielder Nordin Amrabat has claimed that one of Ronaldo’s teammates had to hold that the referee for the game Mark Geiger had asked Cristiano Ronaldo for his shirt as a memento.
Amrabat said: “I do not know what he is used to, but he was very impressed by Cristiano Ronaldo, and I hear from Pepe that he asked in the first half if he should have his shirt.
“What are we talking about? At the World Cup? It’s not a circus here.”
And as soon as this news broke out, the footballing world has been raising a lot of concerns over the credibility of the officials in the tournament.
FIFA though have been quick to come out of the blocks and have stated that Mark Geiger did not ask for Cristiano Ronaldo’s shirt during the Portugal vs Morocco game.
In a statement, FIFA said: “It has been claimed that Mr Geiger asked for the shirt of the captain of Portugal during the half-time interval. Mr Geiger strongly refutes these claims and categorically states that such a request was not made.
“Fifa unequivocally condemns the allegations supposedly made by a member of the Moroccan team.
“Fifa referees are under clear instructions with regard to their behaviour and relationship with the teams at the 2018 Fifa World Cup Russia and it can be confirmed that Mr Geiger has acted in an exemplary and professional manner as an appointed match official.
“Fifa would like to remind teams of their duty to respect all principles of fair play.”