England v France: Referee's Wikipedia page edited to say he 'lost his guide dog'
The Wikipedia page for referee Wilton Sampaio appears to have been edited by England fans upset by his decisions in the first half of the World Cup quarter-final.
Many supporters were enraged over a number of the Brazilian referee's calls during Saturday's game, which ended 2-1 to France.
A possible foul in the build up to the French opener, and a potential penalty were eventually waved away after a lengthy VAR review.
England's Jude Bellingham also reacted with disbelief after France's Theo Hernandez avoided being sent off following a hard shove against left-back Mason Mount.
Members of the public can edit Wikipedia, and in changes to Mr Sampaio’s page which were later taken down he was described as “a Brazilian cheat”.
Another edit on the online encyclopaedia suggested that Mr Sampaio had “lost his guide dog”. “Please return dog if found, the dog has a match to ref,” the entry added.
Among those criticising Mr Sampaio’s decisions was former England right-back Gary Neville, who said a challenge by Dayot Upamecano on Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka in the build-up to France’s first goal should have been given as a free kick.
“It’s not excuses… but Upamecano has tried to win the game on three or four occasions where it’s impossible to win the ball,” he said. “It’s a simple decision, he just kicked his leg away and I’m not sure why it’s not ended up as a foul. He’s nibbling and he’s kicked him and it should be a free kick.” Fellow former England international Ian Wright added: “It is very difficult to see that not given, especially in the current climate what they give fouls for.”
Olivier Giroud makes it 2-1 to France
Former England footballer and broadcaster Gary Lineker tweeted: “One of these days, just once, we might get a decision in our favour.” The Three Lions later equalised after the referee awarded them a penalty, converted by Harry Kane.
However Les Bleus made it 2-1 after a goal from Olivier Giroud in the 77th minute of playing time. Skipper Kane then missed a vital penalty that could have equalised the score for England.
While England Substitute Marcus Rashford sent a last-gasp free-kick just over the bar as France players celebrated a hard-fought 2-1 win that sets up a semi-final clash with Morocco.
Speaking after the match, former Arsenal striker Ian Wright said he felt sorry for Kane and thought the defeat would be a tough one for England to take. “The first half didn’t go so well and we had a couple of decisions that went against us but we came back well from those. There was a period where we were all over them. “You are disappointed for Harry missing the pen. He’s the man, he’s done brilliantly but he’s tried to make sure of getting it in and it’s not quite worked out. It’s so disappointing for him.”
Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know...