‘In England and Scotland they tell refs to f*** off all the time!’: Gennaro Gattuso, in an eye-patch, rages at Italian referees being oversensitive after Napoli captain Lorenzo Insigne was sent off for swearing at officials
- Lorenzo Insigne was shown a straight red card by referee Davide Massa
- Insigne reacted angrily towards Massa after David Ospina conceded a penalty
- Gennaro Gattuso was wearing a patch due to a flare-up of an eye condition
- But the Napoli boss believes Insigne would have avoided punishment in England
Napoli boss Gennaro Gattuso has launched a furious attack on referees in Italy for being oversensitive after captain Lorenzo Insigne was sent off for dissent in their defeat by Inter Milan.
The Italy international was shown a straight red card by referee Davide Massa during the second half of Napoli’s 1-0 Serie A defeat on Wednesday, after reacting angrily when penalty was awarded for Antonio Conte’s men following goalkeeper David Ospina’s foul on Matteo Darmian.
Now the Napoli boss – who was wearing an eye patch over his glasses due to a serious eye condition that flares up occasionally – believes Insigne would have avoided similar punishment in the Premier League or Scottish Premiership.
Gennaro Gattuso has raged at referees after Lorenzo Insigne (centre) was sent off for dissent
Insigne reacted angrily towards referee Davide Massa after seeing his Napoli side concede a penalty following David Ospina’s foul on Matteo Darmian
‘This only happens in Italy,’ Gattuso told Sky Sport Italia in a visibly irritable mood.
‘I told the referee Massa that two minutes before the red card he complimented Insigne on how he was behaving as captain, then two minutes later sent him off.
‘You can’t send off a player, especially the captain, for telling the referee to f*** off after a dubious penalty.
‘In England and Scotland, they tell referees to f*** off all the time and nothing happens, only in Italy do players get sent off for this sort of thing.
Gennaro Gattuso was wearing an eye-patch due to a condition that flares up occasionally
And he believes Insigne would have avoided punishment in the Premier League and Scotland
‘When I was a player, it was a sport, the referee should show some common sense and understand that after a dubious penalty, a player can say f*** off and the official should pretend not to hear it. You can’t leave a team down to 10 men for that.
‘He wasn’t even saying it to his face in an aggressive fashion.’
The penalty itself was converted by Inter striker Romelu Lukaku to leave the hosts in second place, one point behind leaders AC Milan.
Napoli meanwhile remain the final Champions League spot and have collected 23 points after 12 Serie A games.
Gattuso was diagnosed with sixth nerve palsy – a serious disorder associated with the dysfunction of the cranial nerve that controls eye movement – in 2011 and the conditions remains difficult to treat.
Romelu Lukaku (left) dispatched the subsequent penalty to give Inter Milan a crucial victory
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