On Tuesday, one fan didn’t just didn’t just cry out for justice after such a debatable decision. He called the police and demanded it.
A Manchester United fan dialed 999, the official emergency telephone number in the United Kingdom, after referee Cuneyt Cakir sent Nani off in the second half of its UEFA Champions League game against Real Madrid. The irate fan felt that a crime had been committed and called local police, according to the BBC.
Although the authorities receive bogus calls on a regular basis, they didn’t think this one was at all funny.
“While this recent example may be amusing, it illustrates the sort of insincere calls we have to deal with on a daily basis in the control room,” chief inspector Ted Antill said. “They waste our time and they direct us away from genuine victims of crime, particularly if we dispatch officers out to something that turns out to be a bogus report.”
The report adds that the 18-year-old United fan later apologized, saying he got “caught up in the moment.” He won’t face prosecution for the call.
“It’s no joke,” Antill added. “In this case, the man realized his bad judgement and apologized and we decided not to pursue it further.”
Nani’s dismissal was the major flashpoint in the high-profile contest, and observers around the world are debating whether or not the Portuguese winger deserved the red card.
The court of public opinion may not be able to decide if the referee’s decision was justified. The angry United fan could be on to something. Maybe lawyers and judges are best equipped to settle the matter, but they would have to speak to the referee first. It could be tough to do, as Cakir lives and works in Turkey.