Peter Crouch recalled the moment he wanted to ‘punch’ Marcelo in a Champions League match back in 2011.
The former Liverpool striker scored the winning goal in the 1-0 aggregate win over AC Milan in the last-16, but took just 15 minutes to go from hero to zero at the Santiago Bernabeu for the club’s next game.
The referee, Felix Brych, sent Crouch off with two yellow cards for challenges on Sergio Ramos and Marcelo to leave Spurs down to 10-men on route to a 4-0 defeat in Spain.
But while Crouch conceded Brych was right to book him the first time for upending Ramos, he was left fuming over the second booking.
The Englishman’s sliding tackle on Marcelo caused the full-back to go flying. Brych, therefore, gave him his marching orders, and Marcelo was caught on camera celebrating the dismissal before jumping back up.
“We went on a great run, beating Inter Milan and AC Milan – I got the winner at the San Siro and we got through to the quarter-finals of the Champions League to face Real Madrid,” said Crouch to Paddy Power.
“I was so excited, as I had never played at the Bernabeu before. I was like a big kid looking around, thinking ‘this is amazing’.
“Within 10 or 15 minutes I get two yellow cards and get sent off! The dressing room is underneath the stadium and there are tiers upon tiers of fans and you can hear them.
“I’m sat in the dressing room with a towel over my head, hearing goal after goal after goal going in and I’m thinking: ‘that’s down to me’. That was low point and a big regret.
“I do have a little excuse when it comes to the cards though. The first one was me being excitable, so I can give the referee that. It was a tackle on Sergio Ramos.
“For the second one, I went to block a ball down the line from Marcelo and I did dive in a bit, but I didn’t touch him. He’s jumped up in the air and rolled around, and there is a camera angle where you can see he looks at the referee and he celebrates as the red card comes out then he jumps back up.
“I’ve never wanted to punch anyone more in my life! For them, that was seen as a win. They’ve won the game and they played me. I was naive to let myself get caught up in that.”
With Crouch suspended, Spurs lost the return leg 1-0 at White Hart Lane to exit the Champions League on a 5-0 aggregate defeat.
Peter Crouch was speaking on Paddy Power’s From The Horse’s Mouth podcast.