You reckon this guy still remembers the 7-1 defeat?
The Russian referee Valentin Ivanov said the stormy World Cup match between Portugal and Holland was the most difficult of his professional career. Ivanov has been criticised for his performance in Sunday's secondround clash, won 1-0 by Portugal, which saw a World Cup record four red cards shown. Eight other players were cautioned.
"Probably, from the point of view of rudeness, it was the worst match I ever had," the 45-yearold referee was quoted as saying by the Russian daily Izvestia yesterday. Ivanov said the rough tactics of Dutch players took him by surprise. "You would expect some dirty tricks from the Portuguese. They are known for time-wasting or hitting from behind," he said. "But I was unpleasantly surprised by seeing such things from the Dutch. What's more, they were the instigators."