The Catalan giants defeated their arch-rivals 2-0 in the first-leg of their semi-final tie at the Santiago Bernabeu. Madrid’s Pepe was sent off just after the hour-mark for a challenge on Barca right-back Daniel Alves and Pep Guardiola’s team subsequently went on to score twice to take a commanding lead in the two-legged affair.
However, United defender Ferdinand and his team-mate Owen both believe that Pepe should not have been sent off and gave their opinion on their respective Twitter accounts.
"This diving is a joke/embarrassing,” tweeted Ferdinand. “When Pedro watches that do you think he'll think, 'What was I doing!?' Rugby players must laugh at football."
Regarding the Pepe-Alves incident, the England international centre-back added: "If you ever see me go off on a stretcher then run back on to play, I give everyone on here the green light to hit me with a two-footed tackle."
Owen too criticised the Barca players and tweeted: "Alves' actions won't please many as if he had got straight up it would have been a yellow card, but Barca fans will be happy with his actions."
Madrid coach Jose Mourinho hit out at the “scandal” of the Bernabeu in his post-match press conference and the Spanish giants have released a video on their official website which they claim prove that Pepe did not make contact with Alves during his challenge.
The video also contains footage of a clash between Pedro and Alvaro Arbeloa and an encounter between Sergio Busquets and Marcelo.
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