The defending champions, Chelsea were finally kicked out of the FA Cup after a 2-1 defeat to Manchester City at Wembley on Sunday. Manchester City midfielder Samir Nasri drew first blood, which was followed by a goal from Sergio Aguero.
Chelsea striker Demba Ba cut down Manchester City’s lead to one before Fernando Torres’ opportunity to equalize through the spot-kick was denied by the match referee.
Chelsea manager Rafael Benitez believes the outcome of the game could have been different had the penalty been awarded.
“Yes, clearly. It is very clear. You can see the pictures. It is very clear. We had two situations in the second half that are difficult to explain but we are playing against a very good team so if they scored another the game would have been over,” Rafael Benitez said.
“But we had very good chances to score and could have been back in the game. These two decisions were the big difference.”
Rafael Benitez failed to comment on David Luiz’s imprudent challenge of Sergio Aguero, the decided of which could have easily led to a red card.
“See the video,” Rafael Benitez added. “I will not talk about players, but for me the penalty decision was crucial.”
Manchester City’s second-choice of goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon handed in a brilliant performance from the spot usually occupied Joe Hart. Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini was impressed by the Romanian’s performance and confessed he had already decided to feature him in the FA Cup final.
“Costel did very well. He is a good keeper and he deserves this situation because he has been here for two years and has done very well behind Joe Hart,” Roberto Mancini said.
“It is a good situation for Joe too. We have for weeks to the final but I think it will be this (Pantilimon playing).”
The FA Cup final between Manchester City and Wigan Athletic will be played April 17 at the Wembley Stadium.
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