Juventus rules out conspiracy claims

Juventus rules out conspiracy claims

MILAN, Italy - Agence France-Presse
Juventus rules out conspiracy claims

Juventus’ Arturo Vidal celebrates the winning goal against Catania. AP photo

Juventus director general Beppe Moratta has moved to brush off claims of a conspiracy after the Serie A champions’ controversial win at Catania on Oct. 28.

“I agree that there was a refereeing mistake yesterday but there have been other mistakes in previous matches and last year Juve was on the receiving end,” said Moratta. “But we categorically reject any idea of a conspiracy, that Juve somehow affected the result yesterday.”

Arturo Vidal’s 57th-minute winner helped Juve extend its lead at the top of Serie A and took its unbeaten streak but the Sicilians had earlier scored a perfectly good goal that was chalked off by the referee for offside.

On what was an extraordinary day for controversial refereeing decisions, Lazio also complained after it finished its 2-0 defeat at Fiorentina with nine men, having also seen a goal knocked off.

The incidents have raised questions over the standard and professionalism of refereeing in Italy, prompting a reaction from the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) president Gianni Petrucci.

“The referees are working hard and mistakes sometimes happen,” said Gianni Petrucci. “People should stop getting carried away.”