Giorgio Chiellini has blamed referee Marco Rodriguez for Italy's exit from the 2014 World Cup, claiming the official should have sent off Luis Suarez for biting him.
Claudio Marchisio was dismissed for Italy in the 58th minute for a dangerous challenge on Uruguay's Egidio Arevalo, while Suarez appeared to bite Chiellini moments before Uruguay scored what proved to be the winning goal through Diego Godin.
CAN LUIS SUAREZ BE BANNED?
Yes. Suarez could still be subject to punishment from FIFA's Disciplinary Committee, who are responsible for:
a) sanctioning serious infringements which have escaped the match officials' attention;
b) rectifying obvious errors in the referee's disciplinary decisions;
c) extending the duration of a match suspension incurred automatically by an expulsion (cf. art 18, par. 4);
d) pronouncing additional sanctions, such as a fine.
Precedents: 1994: Italy's Mauro Tassotti (elbow) - retroactively suspended for eight games. 2013: Josep Simunic (facist salute to crowd) banned for 10 games. FIFA's Code. »
Chiellini believes the referee got both of these calls wrong, costing Italy a place in the round of 16 and has claimed the decision to overlook Suarez's behaviour is due to a conspiracy to keep the top players involved in the tournament.
"It's a disgrace," the Juventus defender told Sky Sport Italia. "The referee decided this game. If either team should have gone through, then it was us.
"Giving a red card to Marchisio and no red to Suarez decided the game. There was a different treatment for both sides and that decided the game and decided who went through.
"When we had 11 men, they weren't a threat at all and we were in perfect control, but then in the end, [the red card] was decisive.
"But then Suarez gets away with whatever he wants because FIFA want the top players involved. He bit me, and the sign is there. Now [FIFA] have got to have the courage to take action."
Meanwhile, Cesare Prandelli said he was considering his future as Italy coach after the Squadra Azzurra were knocked out of the World Cup in the group stage for the second consecutive tournament. He has since confirmed his resignation.
"I've been working here for four years and then one red card ruins it all," Prandelli told Sky Sport Italia. "Of course that makes you consider things. We'll evaluate and consider the future."
"It didn't seem a red card to me. There were some strong tackles, but nothing worthy of a red card. It was a very even game, they never had a shot on goal while we looked for chances. It was a great game tactically, and I think the referee ruined it.
"A referee can't be allowed to ruin a game like this. We played a good first game, a bad second game and then we were in control today, until the referee ruined it. It's absurd to be left with 10 men."
Asked about the Suarez incident, he replied: "I shouldn't have to comment on that gesture. I only saw the bite marks on Chiellini's shoulder. The referees' assistants were so busy and so attentive that they didn't see anything."
Italy goalkeeper and captain Gianluigi Buffon spoke of his sadness following a second defeat in as many games.
Their poor form comes despite winning the competition in 2006 and reaching the final of the European Championship in Poland and Ukraine two years ago.
Buffon, who missed Italy's only victory of the 2014 tournament, 2-1 against England, due to injury, said the squad must now reflect on their failure.
"I would have done without winning man of the match," he said. "As a team and a nation it's a very sad day because it's a day of failure judging by the football we played.
"This saddens us a great deal. It induces us to reflect on things altogether. We have to examine our conscience at this point."