ref robbed us: Pantsil

GHANA defender John Pantsil has blamed referee Olegario Benquerenca for the Black Stars' premature exit from the World Cup.

GHANA defender John Pantsil has blamed referee Olegario Benquerenca for the Black Stars' premature exit from the World Cup.

For Pantsil the raw disappointment brought on by Portuguese referee Benquerenca's decision not to award Dominic Adiyiah a goal in the last minute of extra time, when Uruguay striker Luis Suarez handled a goal-bound effort, will linger for a long time.

The 29-year old reckons the referee should have awarded the goal since the ball crossed the line.

Many who rallied behind Ghana's cause concur. But seasoned goal-scorer Asamoah Gyan should have done better with his spot kick. The Stade Rennais player's stock would have gone up, adding to his status as one of the tournament's top emerging talents.

"It was a big disappointment. We should have been in the semifinals had the referee given the goal like he was supposed to have done. Now we have to accept it and move on," Pantsil said.

There is also a feeling that despite the unprecedented joy the Black Stars have given to Africans, Pantsil's entire experience will be tinged by some bitterness towards the villain of this chapter, Suarez. The Fulham man has branded him a cheat.

Meanwhile Gyan appeared to have recovered from Friday's events and was in good spirits.

"There has been some interest here and there, but I belong with my team. If anyone is interested they are welcome to talk," he said.

"After the miss I was devastated, but my family at home prayed for me. Luck was just not on our side that day and our dream of qualifying did not come true.

"We will have to wait for another day."

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