Jose Mourinho was forced to get involved in an on-pitch scuffle during Roma’s feisty defeat by AC Milan on Thursday night.
Roma ended the Serie A clash with nine men after Rick Karsdorp and Gianluca Mancini were both dismissed in the second half for picking up two yellow cards.
Milan ran out 3-1 winners at San Siro to close the gap on rivals Inter Milan at the top of the table.
It was a disappointing night for Mourinho’s Roma, who found themselves 2-0 down after 17 minutes following Olivier Giroud’s penalty and Junior Messias’ rebound after the former Chelsea striker hit the post.
Tammy Abraham made up for his handball, which gave Giroud the chance to open the scoring, by backheeling in from Lorenzo Pellegrini's shot to make it 2-1 before half-time.
But that was not the end of the drama involving the striker, who joined Roma in a £34million transfer from Chelsea in the summer.
After giving away a penalty and scoring, Abraham ran the risk of picking up a second yellow card when he got involved in a fracas with Milan players.
Mourinho was so concerned that his star striker might get sent off that he took matters into his own hands, sprinting onto the pitch to drag him away from the epicentre of the pushing and shoving.
It worked in keeping Abraham on the pitch, but it did not affect the result as wing-back Karsdorp received his marching orders in the 74th minute for a second yellow.
Rafael Leao settled things by smashing in Milan’s third goal on the break before more drama came in added time.
Mancini became the second Roma player to be sent off in the 94th minute, but Zlatan Ibrahimovic saw his resulting penalty kick saved by former Wolves keeper Rui Patricio.
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The result leaves Roma seventh in Serie A, 14 points off leaders Inter, and Mourinho took aim at the referee and VAR after the full-time whistle.
"We have had poor quality today,” he told DAZN. “But we also have to talk about the quality of the referee and the VAR.
“I don't see anywhere the touch with Tammy Abraham's hand. And the penalties to [Roger] Ibáñez and [Nicolo] Zaniolo? I would like us to play on equal terms.”
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