The Sports Matrix: Monday 16 April 2012


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The Independent Online

Atkinson admits 'ghost goal' mistake to Redknapp

Harry Redknapp revealed last night that referee Martin Atkinson admitted to him in the aftermath of Tottenham's 5-1 FA Cup semi-final defeat to Chelsea that he made a huge mistake in allowing Juan Mata's "ghost goal" to stand.

It came four minutes into the second half with Chelsea 1-0 up when Mata had a shot blocked by Benoit Assou-Ekotto in a goal-mouth scramble. Replays showed the ball had not crossed the line and even Chelsea captain John Terry admitted in a radio interview that he did not think the goal should have stood.

"I spoke to him [the referee]," said Redknapp, above, after the game. "He says he feels worse than I do [for allowing Juan Mata's goal to stand]. I said: 'I don't think so.' But he says he feels bad. He knows he's made a mistake and he says he'll have a bad week as well. Nothing we can do now."

Chelsea will now meet Liverpool in the final on 5 May. MORE

Ferguson admits Young penalty 'fall'

Sir Alex Ferguson yesterday admitted that Ashley Young won the penalty with a "dramatic fall" in Manchester United's 4-0 victory over Aston Villa at Old Trafford. "It was a dramatic fall, he maybe overdid it," Ferguson said. "But it was a penalty." MORE

Martinez: Maloney can provide 'magic'

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez believes Shaun Maloney can make an impact against Arsenal tonight to help steer his side to Premier League safety. "He is a player who is capable of that little bit of magic that gives you results," said Martinez. MORE

Donald replaced by McIlroy as No 1

Luke Donald will be replaced by Rory McIlroy as World No 1 when the rankings are announced today, after failing to finish in the top eight at the RBC Heritage tournament last night. "I'd have liked to have played a bit more consistently this year," Donald said.

Notts take control as Surrey falter

Nottinghamshire established themselves as the early leaders in the County Championship after completing a second win in as many matches, beating Durham by 114 runs. Elsewhere, Surrey lost to recently promoted Middlesex by three runs. MORE

Quins chief hails troubled Wasps

Harlequins' director of rugby Conor O'Shea offered his support to financially troubled Wasps after his Premiership leaders' 33-17 win over them. "English rugby needs Wasps," said O'Shea. "They are too big a club, too great a club, to disappear." MORE

Dominant Rosberg claims maiden win

Nico Rosberg claimed his maiden grand prix win with a strong display in China, the German leading from pole position to claim Mercedes' first F1 victory since the 1955 Italian GP. McLaren's Jenson Button was second and Lewis Hamilton third. MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

Synchronised died doing something of his own volition. Separated from his jockey, AP McCoy, he kept running and jumping. He wasn't pushed beyond his limits or his appetite. He was in charge of his own destiny. MORE