Jude Bellingham red carded after final whistle as Real Madrid is controversially denied winning goal against Valencia

CNN — Real Madrid star Jude Bellingham was sent off after he was denied an injury-time winner against Valencia on Saturday.

The 20-year-old Bellingham looked to have scored the winning goal with a header deep into stoppage at the Mestalla Stadium, but referee Gil Manzano had blown the whistle for full-time shortly before the ball had been crossed.

That prompted Bellingham, along with other Real Madrid players, to remonstrate angrily with the referee, only for the midfielder to be shown a red card as the match ended 2-2.

Hugo Duro had given Valencia the lead in the first half with a reaction header, before Roman Yaremchuk intercepted Dani Carvajal’s wayward back pass and made it 2-0, stunning the visiting side.

Real Madrid pulled a goal back through Vinícius Jr. right on the stroke of halftime and continued to push for an equalizer in the second half.

That came in the 76th minute when Vinícius headed in from close range for his ninth league goal of the season, marking a positive return to the Mestalla for the Brazilian star after he was racially abused by fans in the stadium last year.

He had celebrated his first goal by raising his fist into the air on what was his 250th appearance for Real Madrid.


There was more drama to come as the match neared its conclusion. A video assistant referee review overturned a penalty for a challenge on Duro, denying Valencia the chance to get a winner.

Then in the ninth minute of stoppage time, Brahim Díaz put a cross into the box which Bellingham headed into the net, though Manzano’s whistle moments before the cross meant that the goal wouldn’t count.

Chaotic scenes followed as Real’s players surrounded the referee and Bellingham, playing his first game since an ankle injury last month, was shown a red card.

In his official referee report, Manzano explained that he had produced the red card because Bellingham “ran at me in an aggressive attitude and yelling, repeating various times, ‘it’s a f**king goal!’”

Real manager Carlo Ancelotti expressed his frustration over the disallowed goal after the match, saying: “Something unprecedented has happened and it’s never happened to me before.

“After the rebound we had possession. It’s never happened to me before and there’s nothing more to add. We were annoyed by Bellingham’s red card because he didn’t say anything insulting.”

Ancelotti added that his players were “upset and angry” with the decisions and “have to cool down a bit because the team is still seething.”

The good news for Los Blancos is that they are still seven points clear at the top of LaLiga, though second-placed Girona could narrow the gap against Mallorca on Sunday.

Before the game, both the teams paid tribute to the victims of last week’s deadly fire in a Valenica apartment block, observing a minute’s silence and laying a wreath on the pitch.

Real next plays RB Leipzig in the Champions League on Wednesday, while Valencia returns to action in the league against Getafe next Saturday.