Real Madrid defender earns flak for alleged stamp on Lionel Messi's hand in Barcelona's come-from-behind 1-2 Copa del Rey victory
Slammed by media... Real Madrid defender Pepe was branded "shameful" and "embarrassing" in the Spanish press yesterday following his apparent stamp on Lionel Messi's hand in Wednesday's 1-2 defeat to arch-rivals Barcelona. "Pepe, a public danger, was the biggest exponent of an impotent and deranged Madrid," blared the Barcelona-based sports daily Mundo Deportivo showing a picture-by-picture account of the stamping incident, under the headline "World disgrace".
By Gerard pique... Lionel Messi's Barcelona teammate Gerard Pique blasted Pepe too. "I do not have a teammate like Pepe in Barca's dressing room," Pique said during a press conference. "But everyone saw it, everyone. I do not hope to have a teammate who acts like Pepe does." Pique called for the Spanish Football Federation's Disciplinary Committee to analyse the incident. "The referee may or may not have seen it, but there are people whose job it is to handle these cases," he added.
Downed! Barcelona's Gerard Pique points to Lionel Messi's injured hand allegedly stamped by Real Madrid's Pepe during their Spanish Cup quarter-final first leg at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday. Barcelona won 1-2.
11th min: Real Madrid's Ronaldo makes it 1-0
By wayne rooney... Manchester United star Wayne Rooney, no strange to acts of on-field petulance himself, was among the first to admonish Pepe yesterday. The England forward wrote on Twitter: "Pepe. What an idiot.
49th min: Puyol scores for 1-1
77th min: Abidal nets Barca's winner
Sometimes people wind u up." Then, when Messi set Eric Abidal up for the winning goal moments later, Rooney added: "Haha. That goal serves pepe right." Rooney's international colleague Jack Wilshere was also less than impressed, adding: "Poor from Pepe!"