Mourinho left fuming after Barca defeat

by AFP on Apr 28, 2011

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Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho hit out at UEFA, the referee and counterpart Pep Guardiola after a 2-0 loss to Barcelona that left the nine-time champion's Champions League title hopes in tatters.

In Wednesday's semi-final first leg, Mourinho saw his team reduced to 10 men against Barcelona for the fifth straight game counting back to last year's semi-final win with Inter Milan.

The Portuguese coach, who was sent off for protesting Pepe's 61st-minute red card, claimed UEFA favours Barcelona and said Barcelona under Guardiola have never won the Champions League fairly.

"It disgusts me to live in this world," the surly Mourinho said.

Pepe's exit opened up Madrid and Lionel Messi scored twice in the last 15 minutes to give Barcelona a commanding advantage ahead of Tuesday's second leg at the Camp Nou.

Mourinho followed up the ill-tempered match, which he and Guardiola had already stoked with comments in the buildup, with an equally sullen news conference, and even that was delayed by UEFA so both teams could cool down.

Mourinho said a conspiracy between Barcelona and UEFA must exist after the Catalan club came out with a favourable referee decision for the third straight semi-final.

"Every semi-final the same thing always happens. Why? I'll live my whole life with this question but I hope one day to get the answer," Mourinho said. "Why could Chelsea not get to the final two years ago? Last year to get to the final with Inter was a miracle. Why again in this game?"

Guardiola led Barcelona to the 2009 trophy after getting past Chelsea, which had an injury-time penalty claim for a handball waved away. Inter eliminated Barcelona last year despite playing for over an hour with 10 men.

"I don't understand. I don't know if it's publicity for (sponsor) UNICEF or (FIFA and UEFA head of referees committee Angel) Villar's influence in UEFA. They have the power and no-one else has a chance."

Mourinho, who worked as an assistant coach during a four-year stint at Barcelona in the late 1990s, was particularly scathing of Barcelona's accomplishments, which he believed would be tainted regardless.

"You can't hide it. Inside (the Catalans) are laughing and enjoying this thinking we're going to (the final at) Wembley. But to win this way must leave a bad taste," Mourinho said.

Guardiola, who responded to Mourinho's pre-match comments with an expletive-filled rant, wouldn't be drawn into reacting this time.

"Nothing," Guardiola responded when asked his opinion about Mourinho's comments.

Barca midfielder Xavi Hernandez said his team was rewarded for its more positive approach against a defensive Madrid side which managed only 23 per cent of possession.

"Barcelona was superior again - we were the only team on the field looking to play football, looking to hold the ball, attack, take the game," Xavi said. "The result is just."