Miralem Pjanic was left bewildered by the “absurd” decision that saw Cristiano Ronaldo red carded in Juventus’ 2-0 Champions League defeat of Valencia on Wednesday night.
Pjanic was the hero of the night as he netted two penalties for the Italian giants, either side of the halftime break – with Ronaldo dismissed as early as the 29th minute.
There was a third penalty late in the game at the other end of the field, but Wojciech Szczesny denied Dani Parejo to maintain a clean sheet.
After the match, Pjanic told the club’s official website: “Football is a strange game. We could have been 4-0 up after the opening period, then came that absurd sending off.
“It was like the Lyon game. We dug deep and found the spirit we needed to take us all the way to the final. That’s what we need to do again.”
Szczesny added: “It was a good reaction from the team. It wasn’t an easy game, but we kept it compact and stayed organised.
“It wasn’t easy after we went down to ten men, but everyone did a great job. The wide players were excellent and [Mario] Mandzukic covered so much ground. It was a reaction worthy of champions.”
Ronaldo will wait to discover if the red card is upheld, meaning he could miss facing former side Manchester United, as well a game against BSC Young Boys.