Dortmund CEO Watzke fumes at 'arrogance' of referee Makkelie in Champions League exit

By Sports Desk March 08, 2023

Borussia Dortmund chief executive officer Hans-Joachim Watzke has accused referee Danny Makkelie of arrogance over his penalty call in the club's Champions League exit to Chelsea.

The Bundesliga side slipped out of Europe after failing to build on their 1-0 first-leg advantage at Stamford Bridge, with a 2-0 defeat on the night meaning a 2-1 aggregate loss to their Premier League hosts.

Chelsea's ultimate winner came from a Kai Havertz penalty, but only when Makkelie allowed the forward to retake it due to encroachment after he missed his first attempt.

Watzke however felt the Dutch referee was guilty of arrogant behaviour in his decision-making, and suggested he was too easily swayed from his gut decisions by a boisterous home atmosphere.

"You always had the bad feeling that he wanted to be the most important man on the pitch," he told SID.

"His gestures, his facial expressions, he really liked [to perform to the crowd].

"Instinct was a foreign word to him. We lost control of the game too early, and congratulations to Chelsea. They deserve to go through.

"But the decision to retake the penalty was very controversial and the original call itself was a 50-50 decision. There's no question about that at all."

Chelsea were originally awarded the penalty after VAR intervened over a handball offence from Dortmund defender Marius Wolf.

Havertz hit the right post with his first attempt, but Makkelie allowed him to retake it after replays showed players from both teams encroached into the box.

Watzke was far from the only Dortmund figure to express their discontent with the decision, with Jude Bellingham also voicing his frustration after the game.

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