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Sep 11, 2012

Hodgson unhappy with referee

England boss Roy Hodgson stopped short of accusing referee Cuneyt Cakir of costing his side all three points against Ukraine but was critical of the Turk's performance at Wembley.

•  England 1-1 Ukraine
• Qualifying photo gallery Photo Gallery

Cakir sent England captain Steven Gerrard off in the 88th minute and produced a total of nine yellow cards during the match, but he did hand Hodgson's side a vital penalty, converted by Frank Lampard, that saved blushes.

They had fallen behind when Evgeni Konoplienka curled a brilliant shot into the top corner past Joe Hart in the opening half and spurned a host of chances - Tom Cleverley missing three in the first period alone.

But Hodgson was aggrieved at the officiating, especially Cakir's decision to disallow a Jermain Defoe effort, and had words with the referee at the full time whistle.

Hodgson told ITV1: "Some of the yellow cards were a bit hard to take and if Steven Gerrard committed two fouls in the game I'd be surprised.

"We went a goal down to a wonder goal but I was really pleased with the way we kept tidy, kept trying and didn't resort to any hopeful long balls.

"We kept playing through and creating chances and we were rewarded in the end by getting the equaliser and we might even have got a winner.

"All credit to Ukraine who played well enough. At least I'm happy we came out with something because had we lost the game it would have been very harsh on us, because we certainly deserved at least a draw.''

Lampard, who ended up wearing the captain's armband after Gerrard's dismissal, insisted it was a good result for England.

"These games are not easy and in the end getting a point is a good result considering we were 1-0 down with 10 minutes to go," he said.

"At the start of the game you obviously want to win it but when you consider the circumstances we had a goal disallowed, we hit the post, so in the end we showed great character to get a point.''

Lampard admitted his disappointment over Jermain Defoe's disallowed first-half effort, insisting: "I thought he (the referee) pulled it back for a free-kick to us. It wasn't a foul at all so we've very disappointed with that.''

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