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Ljungberg comes clean on officiating in America

Seattle Sounders star signing Freddie Ljungberg has spoken about the difference between officiating in Europe and in America. Speaking to the Sounders official website, Ljungberg said, "I mean, Sigi (Schmid) wants me to be a captain on the pitch and lead our team. And then of course, I have to stand up to the referees a little bit.

"It's different here. In Europe, maybe we can talk a bit more to the referees and they see us on the same level.

"For example, the two times today when I squared up, the last one where I got the yellow card, he stamped straight on my ankle when I was laying down. For me, it's my free kick and he gets the yellow card, but it's the opposite way.

"That's why I reacted and I stand up. Not in a bad way, but when people wanted me to come over here, they wanted me to bring a bit of the game and a bit of the European thing and raise the level in this country.

"And then of course, if things like that happen, if we're going to have my legs look like they do at the moment, then I can only play every second game.

"That's what we do. I do it for the team as well. Like I said before, we don't want any more red cards that we had earlier in the season.

"So we don't want to retaliate, but it should be OK to tell the opposition or the referee that they're doing something wrong. I think that's being equal on the pitch, to be honest."

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