Malaga players and officials blamed everyone but themselves for the club’s UEFA Champions League quarterfinal exit at Signal Iduna Park on Tuesday night, as Borussia Dortmund pulled off one of the greatest escapes in the competition’s history to win the game and the series, 3-2. After the game, Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini, midfielderJoaquin, and owner Sheikh Abdullah Al Thani suggested the Spanish side’s defeat came down to a conspiracy.
"On this occasion we could not, or they did not want us to, get through," Pellegrini told reporters. "After we went 2-1 ahead there was no refereeing. They forced us back with elbows and shoves. There were two sendings off that were not given, a double offside in the third goal which should not have counted.”
While Scottish referee Craig Thomson made several poor decisions during the game, Pellegrini neglected to mention the fact that Eliseu’s 82nd-minute goal, which made the score 2-1 in Malaga’s favor, was also offside.
Joaquin, who scored the game’s opening goal in the 25th-minute, went a step further than his coach, suggesting that UEFA President Michel Platini, who imposed a European ban on Malaga for next season due to financial mismanagement, had something to do with the defeat. "We suspect Platini and all the rest of them who are involved," he told Spanish radio. "Because we are Malaga and not Real Madrid it's easier to do this to us.”
And finally, in a series of tweets on his official Twitter feed, Malaga owner Al-Thani bizarrely blamed the defeat on “racism,” and called on UEFA to launch an inquiry. As it turns out, UEFA will be launching an inquiry, but not into the “racism” alleged by Al-Thani. Rather, the European governing body has said it will examine the comments made by Malaga players and officials after the game.