One name that Ghanaians hate to hear at the moment is that of referee Ismail Elfath. He was the referee who officiated the Ghana Black Stars’ group opener against Portugal.
The American referee awarded what many describe as a contentious penalty to Portugal which was expertly converted by captain Cristiano Ronaldo.
Apparently, referee Ismail Elfath made bad decisions when it mattered the most and it also demoralized players of the Blackstars team.
Surprisingly, referee Ismail Elfath refused to go and check the VAR even when the players were urging him to go and check in order to reconsider his controversial decision.
This garnered serious controversy for days. Well, Ismail Elfath has apologized and expressed regret over the penalty he awarded to Portugal.
GhanaFeed reports, According to sports journalist Saddick Adams, Ghanaian Dr Joe K, formerly of Prempeh College caught up with the embattled referee in Qatar.
In their conversation, the referee insisted that based on what he saw at the moment, it was a penalty and he would have been told otherwise by VAR if it was not the case.
According to the referee, he has however been surprised by the backlash which he admits was unexpected and has also taken note of the contrary opinions expressed by renowned referees and pundits.
Referee Elfath, however, insisted that he has nothing against Ghana and that he loves Ghana because he used to play football with Ghanaians.