Chelsea and Barcelona go a long way in terms of controversies and ahead of their 11th meeting in their history we take a look at the top 10 controversies that people talk about till today.
John Terry’s Full Kit Celebration
John Terry’s sending off in the semi-final against Barcelona meant that he was forced to watch the final, against Bayern Munich, from the stands in the 2011-12 season. When Chelsea completed a famous penalty shootout win, Terry who was seen celebrating in the stands, soon made his way down to the pitch dressed in full kit and was seen celebrating with the trophy.
Barça (and Bayern) fans who had their loss to Chelsea fresh in their minds did not let this thing go loose. They took to social media and soon an outburst erupted. Terry received hate mails from Barça and German fans who thought his actions were disgraceful.
Asier Del Horno puts Lionel Messi’s career in jeopardy
Then Chelsea’s Spanish left-back Del Horno got away with a shocking tackle on Lionel Messi as the Argentinean was not able to even walk after that horror show, however Del Horno soon saw red and was sent to the stands. This incident did not go too well with Barcelona supporters as they were seen booing the Spaniard and also took to social media to show their anger.
Mourinho’s Famous – “How Do You Say Cheating in Catalan?”
After Del Horno’s sending off, the Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho was not pleased with the decision as he thought that the tackle was a foul but not worthy of getting sent off. The Portuguese boss accused Lionel Messi of trying to get Del Horno sent off and in the post match press conference, he said those famous words: “How do you say cheating in Catalan?”
Samuel Eto’o Denied Penalty
In the 2004-05 semi-final clash between Chelsea and Barcelona, the Catalan giants needed just one goal to progress and with 14 minutes of the game left to go, Samuel Eto’o was fouled in the penalty box by Ricardo Carvalho, but the referee declared that to be a clear tackle when the replays suggested otherwise. If Barca got that penalty, then things would have been a whole lot different that season.
“The game in London is one of my worst memories. The thing that hurt the most was the ‘penalty’ I should have had but the referee, Collina, didn’t want to see. It was a textbook penalty, clear as day,” the Cameroonian said.
Ronaldinho making the ‘toe poke’ famous
Before 2005 the toe poke/punt/blow was something firmly looked down upon, but then Ronaldinho put the ball through the eye of the needle and bent it around Ricardo Carvalho with his big toe.
This goal was frowned upon by the Blues fans and there was an outrage on social media as the fans called for the goal to be disallowed as that time the ‘toe poke’ was considered to be disgraceful. Well, not anymore.
Drogba screaming “It’s a f****** disgrace”
It just wasn’t in the stars for Chelsea that day as many feel that the Blues were robbed of another Champions League final. Several strong shouts for penalties were turned down throughout the game by referee Tom Ovrebo.
The Ivorian marched up to Ovrebo when the final whistle blew screaming ‘It’s a f****** disgrace’ repeatedly in an outburst.
Chelsea Steward Calling Samuel Eto’o “Monkey”
The referee allowed his emotions get the better of him after the final whistle and was involved in a touchline row with then Chelsea assistant Andre Villas-Boas, the commotion also involving Barça manager Frank Rijdkaard. Several Barca players, including Ronaldinho, also became embroiled in some handbags on the sidelines and Eto’o subsequently accused a Chelsea steward of calling him “a monkey”.
Ricardo Carvalho’s Shirt Pull
In the second leg of the clash between Chelsea and Barcelona, Ricardo Carvalho was seeing pulling Victor Valdes’s jersey in an attempt to prevent the Barca keeper from saving John Terry’s bullet header. In the above image you can see, Carvalho (2) clearly disrupting Valdes’s (3) play.
Without the presence of a VAR or a goal line referee during those days, Carvalho’s mistake was left unnoticed and John Terry got a goal to his name. This incident demoralized the Barca players as they had to win for sure to proceed to the next round and they went on to lose the tie and the match on a 5-4 aggregate.
Referees Brand Jose Mourinho As The “Enemy of Football”
Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho felt aggrieved by Didier Drogba’s red card but his reaction to the game-changing dismissal was shameful, the Portuguese claimed that referee Anders Frisk had invited Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard into his dressing room during the half time interval.
The whole sordid episode resulted in Jose Mourinho being labelled an “enemy of football” by UEFA referees’ committee chairman Volker Roth.
Chelsea vs Barcelona Champions League Semi-Final (2009)
Several penalty appeals were turned down, very clear ones as well. Many fouls not given for Chelsea. It really looked like a ‘conspiracy’ against Chelsea as nothing went their way and it was strange to see a professional referee making so many bad decisions.
There was a fight between the players and the officials, Drogba screaming, Villas Boas fighting and so on, it was really a dark day in football history as this was a proper ‘Controversial’ match.