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By ESPN Staff
Feb 27, 2007

Man United await Lille verdict

Manchester United will find out on Friday if their controversial Champions League last-16 first-leg victory over Lille is to stand.

The French side yesterday announced their intention to appeal against UEFA's decision to dismiss their protest against Ryan Giggs' winning goal at the Stade Felix-Bollaert.

European football's governing body will consider their case again this week after the Ligue One outfit refused to accept the original ruling.

A statement released on Lille's website, www.losc.fr, said: 'President (Michel) Seydoux and the board of LOSC have decided to appeal against the decision made on Friday by the European authority.'

Lille are complaining that referee Eric Braamhaar should have blown his whistle before Giggs took the free-kick that ultimately won the match for United.

'The true question is to determine how the Mancunian players came to take so quickly the free-kick that led to the goal, as they showed signs of a different intention,' added the statement.

Lille refer to quotes attributed to Giggs after the match, which appear to say it was the referee who suggested the Wales winger take the free-kick quickly.

The statement continued: 'Following these principles, LOSC have therefore taken the decision to go through with a fight that seems correct to them.'

Lille also claimed last week that Braamhaar 'warned the kicker he should wait for his whistle before restarting the game' at every other free-kick.

The French club have also reiterated their players were not attempting a 'walk-off' when they made their way to the sideline moments after the goal was allowed to stand.

Seydoux at the time said the team were merely protesting against the official, but added that 'it was not an attempt to get the game abandoned'.

The statement continued: 'At no moment did (coach) Claude Puel have the intention of making his team leave the pitch.'

Lille claimed they had not been told UEFA affords clubs 24 hours to make a complaint after a match.

The French club could also face charges of breaches of security and safety regulations with respect to last week's game, after an apparent crush in the away supporters' enclosure caused by overcrowding.