Former Under-21 coach Marco Tardelli slammed Raymond Domenech for his match-fixing accusations. "He’s an idiot and a sore loser."
France boss Domenech claimed in an interview with ‘Le Parisien’ that Italy had “bought” the referee in a play-off for the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
Tardelli was the tactician in charge of the Azzurrini in that 2-1 second leg victory over Domenech’s youngsters and did not hesitate in hitting back.
"Every now and then Domenech says something really stupid," replied Tardelli. "That’s what he’s like and once again he is trying to provoke opponents. He does this a lot."
Italy won the tie in extra time after both legs ended 1-1 and the match Domenech is referring to was on November 17, 1999.
Officiated by Cardoso Cortez, the game saw Christian Bassila dismissed for striking Roberto Baronio in an off the ball incident witnessed by the linesman.
"There were two legs to that play-off, so presumably we would have had to ‘buy’ the referee in the first match as well," added Tardelli on ‘Rai Sport.’
"Perhaps Domenech is preparing the ground for his fall if France lose at San Siro on September 8. It seems almost pointless answering back to him."
And yet Tardelli took the opportunity to snipe at the World Cup Finalist ahead of that Euro 2008 crunch qualifier.
"Perhaps instead we should ask why he didn’t win more with the formidable Under-21 squads he had at his disposal. He never won anything. So these are the idiotic statements of a loser."
Italy are the most successful side in the history of the European Under-21 Championship, having won the competition in 1992, ’94, ’96, 2000 and 2004.
Source: C4 Football Italia