Steven Gerrard believes referee Cuneyt Cakir was too hasty in handing out yellow cards during England’s 1-1 draw with Ukraine at Wembley on Tuesday evening.
Gerrard was sent-off after picking up his second caution for a challenge on Denys Garmash, as Frank Lampard rescued a point for the Three Lions from the penalty spot. The Liverpool skipper was one of nine players to enter Cakir’s notebook in the World Cup qualifier, and Gerrard says the card count was not indicative of the manner in which the match was played.
“I don’t think there was a bad tackle in the game, was there? And I think the referee’s given seven yellow cards,” Gerrard told the Daily Mail.
“So, it’s disappointing for me because it’s a red card – my first one in 98 caps. But we play San Marino next. I’m sure the boys can do the job without me and then I’ll be available for Poland. I’m gutted over the red, but happy with my performance.”
The midfielder will miss next month’s clash with San Marino, with England sitting in second place in Group H behind Montenegro after two games.
Ukraine, meanwhile, came within three minutes of claiming revenge for their Euro 2012 defeat to England, but Lampard earned the home side a point after Jermaine Defoe had a goal ruled out in the first half. Gerrard says the draw was no less than Roy Hodgson’s men deserved.
“We wanted to win this game tonight,” he said. “We’re at home with our crowd behind us, so we’re disappointed not to get the three points. Having gone a goal down, I think we showed fantastic character and determination. We kept probing for the openings and, when the subs came on, I thought we created more chances.
“I thought we thoroughly deserved the point, if not a bit more on chances. I think you’ve got to give them credit. They’re a fantastic team and I think it’s going to be between us two who tops this group. That’s my prediction.
“I thought in general play, we controlled it. We looked the side who wanted to create all the openings and I think we’ll probably have a better chance of beating them away because they’ll have to come out and take more risks. But, credit to them, they’ve come to Wembley and they’ve taken two points off us.”