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Last Updated: Monday, 3 July 2006, 17:27 GMT 18:27 UK
Rooney 'gobsmacked' by red card
Wayne Rooney is shown the red card by referee Hector Elizondo
Rooney was stunned when he was shown the red card
Striker Wayne Rooney said he was "gobsmacked" to be sent off for a stamp on Ricardo Carvalho in England's World Cup quarter-final against Portugal.

And he insisted he was not angry with Cristiano Ronaldo, who appeared to encourage the referee to send him off.

"I want to say absolutely categorically that I did not intentionally put my foot down on Carvalho," said Rooney.

The 20-year-old added: "I bear no ill feeling to Cristiano but am disappointed he chose to get involved."

England ended up losing 3-1 on penalties to Portugal having drawn 0-0 after extra-time. Rooney's Manchester United team-mate Ronaldo scored the winning spot-kick.

Sven-Goran Eriksson's men played the final hour of the match with 10 men after Rooney's sending-off, but in a statement released on Monday, the striker said: "When the referee produced the red card I was amazed - gobsmacked."

He added: "Obviously I'm bitterly disappointed to have been sent off in a World Cup finals match for England.

Truly if there was any justice, England would now be preparing for a World Cup semi-final

Wayne Rooney
"I remember the incident clearly and have seen it several times since on TV," Rooney said.

"I am of the same opinion now as I was at the time that what happened didn't warrant a red card. If anything, I feel we should have had a free-kick for the fouls committed on me during the same incident.

"If you ask any player - and indeed almost any fan - they will tell you that I am straight and honest in the way I play.

"From what I've seen in the World Cup, most players would have gone to ground at the slightest contact but my only thought then was to keep possession for England."

Rooney hailed his England team-mates, who fought valiantly to force extra-time and penalties despite being a man down.

"I thought the England lads were awesome after I went off and the effort they put in was amazing," he said.

"Truly if there was any justice England would now be preparing for a World Cup semi-final. Sadly, however, that is not to be in 2006."

Earlier on Monday, Ronaldo insisted there was no ill-feeling between him and Rooney.

"At the end we texted each other and between us everything's been cleared," he said.

Ronaldo added: "The things that have been said regarding me and my team-mate and friend Rooney are incredible.

I'm not a referee and I don't have the power to send a player off

Cristiano Ronaldo

"He wished me the best of luck in the World Cup. He told me we had a great team and that if we continued to play like this, we would go far.

"He wasn't angry with me and, moreover, he told me to completely ignore what the English press has said, that all they wanted was to create confusion, but we are already used to that."

Ronaldo insisted he was not to blame for Rooney's dismissal, despite appearing to wink at the Portuguese bench once the red card had been shown.

"I am not a referee and I don't have the power to send off a player," said Ronaldo.

"I had nothing to do with the fact that the referee showed the red card."

And referee Horacio Elizondo said Ronaldo did not influence his decision to send off Rooney.

Elizondo told The Times: "It was violent play and therefore he got a red card.

"People can say what they want (about Ronaldo) but this had absolutely no influence.

"In general I don't pay much attention to that sort of thing because I don't care about the pressure on my shoulders during a match.

"For me it was a clear red card."

SEE ALSO
England beaten on penalties again
01 Jul 06 |  World Cup 2006
Rooney handed red card deadline
03 Jul 06 |  England
Rooney's dismissal stuns England
01 Jul 06 |  England


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