Borussia Dortmund ended up on the wrong side of a 3-2 scoreline in the Bundesliga’s big game on Saturday, with visitors Bayern Munich triumphing at Signal Iduna Park to extend their lead at the top of the table to four points.
There was plenty of controversy in the match with the hosts denied what looked a good penalty shout, before Robert Lewandowski scored the winner from the penalty spot after a hotly contested decision to award a handball against Mats Hummels.
Speaking after the match the Dortmund players were less than impressed with referee Felix Zwayer, an official who was banned from football for six months after reportedly accepting a bribe in 2005 - though confirmation of the ban did not emerge until several years later.
“It wasn’t a penalty, [Hummels] wasn’t looking at the ball, he’s fighting to get it. It hits him,” Bellingham said. “You can look at a lot of the decisions in the game; you give a referee that has match-fixed before the biggest game in Germany, what do you expect?”
Striker Erling Haaland was similarly displeased by the ref’s display and, immediately after full-time, tweeted a thumbs-down emoji on a quote tweet of the announcement of Zwayer being appointed for the game. He soon deleted that tweet, but like Bellingham, didn’t hold back in his assessment in front of the cameras.
“I think it was a scandal when it comes to the referee,” he said.
“Clear penalty [on Reus in the first half]. I asked [the referee] ‘why didn’t you just go and look?’, he said ‘there’s no need’, like an arrogant...no, I have to calm down a little bit now.
“He was arrogant and I will not say more.”
In the match itself, Julian Brandt had given BVB the early lead, before he later went off after a clash of heads. Lewandowski and Kingsley Coman turned the match around before half-time, with Haaland levelling matters just minutes after the restart.
It was Lewandowski who had the final say from the penalty spot, though, leaving him as the league’s top scorer on 16 for the campaign, four ahead of Leverkusen’s Patrick Schick - who hit four on Saturday afternoon in a 7-1 win over bottom club Greuther Furth - and five ahead of Haaland.
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