Athletic: ‘In a Cup semifinal you have to be a referee and a good manager of emotions’

“Perhaps one of the differential aspects for a referee between an ordinary League match and a Cup semi-final is emotional control. In a match prior to the grand final; one has to be, apart from being a referee, a good manager of emotions for those on the field”.

Carlos del Cerro Grande, the referee appointed to direct thethe second leg of the Cup semifinal between Levante and Athletic, is aware of what awaits him in the Ciutat de Valencia. Two teams that play a pass to the Cup final face to face. A similar experience, by the way, to which he had to live last season in Los Cármenes between Granada and Athletic itself.

“A Cup semi-final is an exciting match, in a competition that has also been reborn and has aroused the interest of everyone in general. We are very happy about it because it makes a very attractive competition and we, as referees, also enjoy it ”, said Del Cerro during the press conference in which he took part today with the RFEF Technical Committee of Referees.

The Madrid referee has made it clear that “we referee with the same criteria here as in international matches”, that “The hands are an aspect that creates a lot of controversy, but we, the referees, have perfectly defined criteria”, that “the arrival of the VAR had an immediate effect on the simulation of the players”, that “If you are not absolutely certain that the player has simulated a penalty, it is preferable to abstain”, that “I do not share the opinion that the quality of the refereeing has fallen after the arrival of the VAR” and, finally, that “our level of concentration without an audience in the stands is practically the same as we had before.”

Del Cerro Grande has led in 25 league games and 9 in the Cup to Athleticy in 21 and 2, respectively, to Levante. The Cup semifinal of the last edition of the KO tournament, between Granada and the lions, is included in the baggage of this Madrid referee.