Look, there's typically nothing wrong about asking for Erling Haaland's autograph.
The Borussia Dortmund star is already one of the best players of world, and odds are he's only going to get better at just 20 years old. That's the kind of guy whose autograph you want.
Unless you're a Champions League referee. Whose crew just blew an enormous call against Haaland's team.
When not to ask for Erling Haaland's autograph
Following Dortmund's 2-1 loss to Manchester City in the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal, a referee's assistant was seen on video following Haaland into the tunnel. After a quick back and forth, the assistant appeared to pull out two yellow cards for Haaland to sign.
Players of both teams walked past as it went down.
If Haaland looks a bit unenthusiastic in that video, it may be due to his team being down 2-1 when it should be tied 2-2 going into the second leg of the quarterfinal.
Rewind all the way back the first half, and you can see Dortmund's Jude Bellingham hustling his way to what looked like the most open goal of his life. The midfielder rushed City goalkeeper Ederson and took advantage of a questionable touch to push the ball forward. A goal was certain.
And then the referee decided the contact had to have been a foul. Further replay showed there had been contact, but that was only Ederson's foot getting Bellingham in the shin.
That heinous call ended up being quite costly, as Manchester City was up 2-1 at the end of their home leg. Dortmund will get a chance to come back next week in Germany, but they'd be sitting in better position than they are now if the goal had been allowed.
In the meantime, you have to wonder if a certain referee will be getting a message from UEFA about proper decorum around players. For what it's worth, Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola said he had no issue with the autograph, and he was also pretty happy with the officiating on the pitch.
Guardiola said: "They told me. Maybe he's a fan. Why not? The referees were brilliant, the game was not a problem. The VAR told me it was not a penalty and [Jude] Bellingham, the leg is higher than expected. Yeah, the referees were perfect."
Some have also noted this was the same referee crew involved in incident that saw Paris Saint-Germain and Istanbul Basaksehir walk off the field after the fourth official directed racist language toward one of Istanbul’s assistant coaches.
The official responsible for the slur, Sebastian Coltescu, remains suspended for the rest of the season, but it's safe to say there have been better season for referee crews.
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