Atalanta Coach Stefano Colantuono silenced controversy when he acknowledged “the linesman got it right” against Napoli.
“It’s a shame, as aside from the goal, there was also a red card, so resisting Napoli with 10 men became truly difficult,” he told Rai Sport after a 3-1 Coppa Italia defeat.
“Up until that point it was a really good game and I have to compliment my players, as so many of them were young and lacking experience, but caused Napoli huge problems.
“We are very concentrated on Serie A, but I cared about this tie and I was very pleased with the responses I got. It’s just a shame Jose Callejon’s fantastic goal equalised straight away, as it would’ve forced Napoli to step up even more than they did.”
All the debate was around Lorenzo Insigne’s goal, which was scored when Cristiano Del Grosso stopped to appeal for Gonzalo Higuain’s offside, let the ball bounce off his back and watched Insigne turn into an empty net.
“There’s no discussion, it’s a good goal. From the field the linesman sort of half-lifted the flag, so we were a bit confused, but looking back he was right,” confessed Colantuono after viewing the footage.
“Obviously the players on the pitch at that stage are going to be fired up and can say a few too many words. These things can happen, it’s a pity, but I think any team after an incident like that would’ve complained.
“With this new rule introduced it becomes more confusing and risks causing problems for the linesman and referee.
“Higuain is clearly offside, but he is over a metre away from the player who touched the ball, so in that sense it’s fair enough. When you’re the last man, it is natural to see someone offside and appeal. These things happen.”