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Espanyol 15:00 R Madrid

Karanka blames referee

Real assistant points finger at officials after semi-final exit

Last Updated: 03/05/11 11:00pm

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Karanka: Unhappy with officials after Champions League exit

Karanka: Unhappy with officials after Champions League exit

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Real Madrid assistant coach Aitor Karanka blamed referee Frank De Bleeckere for crashing out of the Champions League to Barcelona.

Barca booked their place at the final at Wembley later this month with a 1-1 draw at Camp Nou on Tuesday night to progress 3-1 on aggregate.

However, Real were unhappy with De Bleeckere's controversial decision to disallow a Gonzalo Higuain goal early in the second half for Cristiano Ronaldo's foul on Javier Mascherano.

The first leg win for Barca in Madrid was overshadowed by Jose Mourinho's controversial claims that Barcelona were favoured by referees and Karanka claimed the disallowed Higuain goal backed up their argument.

Millions saw it

Karanka, who stood in for the banned Mourinho at the post-match press conference said: "I think that after all that has been said this week, everyone saw what we had been going on about today (with regard to Higuain's goal).

"There is no need to say any more than that, millions of people saw it."

Meanwhile, Real captain Iker Casillas has called on his team-mates to pick themselves up after the devastating defeat.

"We have to lift our heads up and be proud," said Casillas.

"Anything we say now could be used against us."

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