Rizzoli admits refereeing errors

Refereeing designator Nicola Rizzoli reveals his career’s biggest mistakes and insists Maurizio Mariani should have used VAR in Juventus-Napoli.

Both Juventus and Napolihad appealed for penalty kicks in the first half of their Allianz Stadium meeting on Wednesday. Rizzoli conceded the referee took the wrong decisions, mainly because he didn’t have a VAR check.

“Mariani and the VAR referees made mistakes, and they are aware of that. I am a fan of technology. It’s absurd that in 2020 the only one who doesn’t watch the replay was the referee,” Rizzoli told Il Corriere dello Sport.

 “I can guarantee that technology has reduced the numbers of mistakes, but everything can be improved.

“Think of the handball. In football, that’s unsportsmanlike behaviour, but we can’t think a player can defend keeping the hands behind his body. It’s not a natural movement and mines his stability.”

Which ones are the worst mistakes in his career?

“Once I gave an inexistent penalty in a Milan derby, but the one I will never forget was in a Champions League match between Atletico Madrid and Barcelona.

“I awarded Barcelona a free-kick instead of a penalty because for a handball. The Atletico Madrid player had his feet outside the box, but his hand was inside, and I didn’t notice it. Barcelona could have qualified if they had scored. Unfortunately, there was no VAR at that time.”