Rakitic plays down Arda incident

Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic played down the incident in the 3-2 win at Atletico Madrid when Arda Turan threw his boot at a linesman.

The Turk became incensed in the second half of the Copa del Rey quarter-final second leg tie when a decision was not given in his favour and launched his footwear at the referee’s assistant, although fortunately it went over his head.

“I didn’t know whether to laugh. I didn’t know how to react,” the Croatian told reporters after the game.

“Overall it was a very highly-charged match, like they all are against Atleti, but we are really happy with our performance.

“It was important to win a game like this, which was a big boost, and this team has shown from day one that it is one big family.

“I have to congratulate everyone on doing a very thorough job. Last year we failed to beat Atletico and now we’ve done it twice.

“We are on the right track. The Cup is an important trophy and of course we are satisfied.”

Rakitic insisted that he saw no altercations between Neymar and any Atleti players, despite defender Juanfran appearing to make a gesture to the Brazilian reminding him of his country’s 7-1 semi-final defeat to Germany in last year’ World Cup.

“I was in another part of the pitch and didn’t see what happened,” he commented.

Tags Arda Turan Rakitic