Whoever thought Howard Webb would be a good choice for a Champions League quarter final in the cauldron of the Nou Camp needs their head checking. It is the same in the Premier League, where Webb gets the vast majority of big matches and time and again fails to cut the mustard.
A dive, you must be joking
Barca should have had a penalty when Lell floored Messi in the box. It was one of the clearest penalities, from every angle. It whould have one of the easiset decisions of his career had Howard Webb pointed to the spot. Instead he flashed the yellow card at Messi for simulation, to the amazement of the young Argentine and the consternation of the crowd. I bet Martin Atkinson (the 4th official) was none too pleased with the decision, which saw him cop an earful from Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola.
One great bit of refereeing
Towards the end of the first half Messi was clattered out of the way by Mark van Bommel just outside the box. Most referees would have given the free kick without thinking. However, Webb stuck both arms out, played a great advantage and allowed Henry to slot the ball into the net to take the score to 4-0. In the excitement though, van Bommel managed to get away without punishment for the challenge, which certainly deserved a yellow, and I think should have been a sending off. A positive for Webb, tainted by yet another big error.
England can offer better...
Martin Atkinson, Mike Dean, Andre Marriner...three top referees from England who are, in my opinion, far better than the current two English elite refs in Webb and Mike Riley.
Rosetti to the rescue
To placate the teams with better refereeing in the return leg, UEFA had to go to the very top of the tree and appoint Roberto Rosetti. Even the incomparable Pierluigi Collina would have struggled to restore Barca and Bayern's faith in referees after such a shambolic display by Webb.