Chicago Fire head coach Veljko Paunovic (right) argues with referee Robert Sibiga during the second half. (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)
BRONX – After he was given the heave-ho in its 1-0 loss to New York City FC, Chicago Fire head coach Veljko Paunović claims he did nothing wrong Wednesday night.
Paunović was ordered from the bench after arguing with referee Robert Sibiga at Yankee Stadium.
“I just want to clarify on the situation on my sending off, on my red card,” he said. “All that I’m saying to the referee is that their player has touched the ball when he called offside and that’s all. I don’t think that anywhere in the world that is something that somebody should be sent off for. I don’t think that there is any disrespect. I did not use any disrespectful language.
“Visually, I’m showing the situation to the referee and I’m just telling him that he actually gave the play-on in that moment, but he called it. We have seen in this league many times that plays like that were played on and I just think that it’s not correct to send me off for that.”
When players and coaches are sent off, they usually have to sit out at least one games.
The Fire plays at the Montreal Impact Sunday afternoon. It sounded like Paunović and the Fire will protest his ejection.
“I want to be in Montreal,” he said. “I want to be clear. I want to be in that game. I don’t deserve to be sent off for this. This is not good.”