THE linesman when Maradona scored
his infamous 'Hand of God' goal against England in 1986 has claimed it should
NEVER have been allowed.
Bulgarian Bogdan Dotchev also launched an attack on the
Tunisian referee, branding him 'an idiot more fit to herd camels in the desert
than take charge of a World Cup game'.
Dotchev broke his 20-year silence after ref Ali Bin
Nasser last week blamed him for not signalling the handball.
But Dotchev insisted:
"A European referee would never
recognise the validity of such a goal".
- European refs take charge of at least one or two
important games per month and are used to big-match pressure.
- What is there for Bin Nasser to referee in the desert
where there is nothing but camels?
Argentina's midfielder Diego Maradona palmed the ball
into the goal over England keeper Peter Shilton in ciudad de México.
Dotchev, a top Bulgarian official back then, says he
knew Maradona had used his hand.
But he claims: "With the ref having said the goal was
valid, I couldn't have waved my flag and told him the goal wasn't good - the
rules were different back then".
Argentina went on to a 2-1 victory to reach the
semi-final - eventually winning the tournament.
But last night British refs chief Keith Hackett, in
charge of nearly 100 internationals between 1981-91, said: "There were
NO rules at the time which said this linesman could not
alert the referee to a handball.
"This incident was one of incompetence on the part of