According to Super Eagles captain, John Mikel Obi, when he asked the Turkish referee Cuneyt Cakin why he did not award the penalty for the handball of Argentine defender, Marcus Rojo, the referee replied saying he didn’t know.
Mikel said the referee admitted that the ball touched the hand of Marcos Rojo in the 82nd minute of Tuesday’s game but he put up a defense in not awarding the crucial spot-kick.
The penalty, if awarded and scored at a time the match was 1-1, could have wrapped up a second round ticket for the Eagles.
Speaking at the post-match briefing in St Petersburg, Mikel said:
“I asked the referee if he thought the ball struck Rojo’s hand and he said ‘yes’. The referee told me that the ball came off Rojo’s head before it hit his hand.”
“I then asked Cakur why he didn’t award the penalty to Nigeria, he said: ‘I don’t know.’ That was sad because we checked the match video in the dressing room and it was a clear penalty kick…”