Bilic praises ‘perfect’ Payet goal, denies dive accusation

Date published: Sunday 13th March 2016 8:20

Slaven Bilic: Disappointed not to win at Old Trafford

Slaven Bilic┬ásays two crucial decisions went against West Ham but the manager paid tribute to Dimitri Payet’s stunning opener against Manchester United.

The Hammers were denied an FA Cup quarter-final victory at Old Trafford by Anthony Martial’s 83rd-minute equaliser, which cancelled out Payet’s brilliant 35-yard free-kick.

Bilic’s side also felt aggrieved by two refereeing decisions in the second-half, when Louis van Gaal felt Payet had dived in an attempt to win a penalty.

That suggested was dismissed by Bilic.

He┬ásaid: “A dive? Come on. If you have a screen, show me, I am going to defend my point at Cambridge if needed. There is more than a contact. It is definitely not a dive.”

Bilic also felt his goalkeeper Darren Randolph was fouled by Bastian Schweinsteiger in the build-up to United’s equaliser.

He said: “It was (a foul). I don’t want to spoil the game talking about the referees – overall, he did a good job, but there have been a couple of situations, crucial ones, that have gone against us.”

Bilic admitted it was frustrating to have been so close to victory but not hold on.

He said: “In our dressing room after the game it was kind of silent. We are a little but disappointed because we were there the last few minutes and the time when you conceded makes you a little bit down.

“But that is good. It shows you have confidence and are moving in the right direction.”

As for Payet’s goal, Bilic said: “I said to myself, ‘It was a bit too far, De Gea is there, it has got to be special’, and make no mistake it was pure class of magic. It was a perfect goal.”

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