English referee Anthony Taylor was praised for his 'exceptional' handling of the Europa League final as he tried to keep a raging Jose Mourinho in check.
The Premier League official was even likened to legendary referee Pierluigi Collina as he was named man-of-the-match in an ugly game due to the bad behaviour of Roma and Sevilla players.
Roma boss Mourinho was left raging with Taylor and confronted him in the car park after his side's penalty shootout defeat to Sevilla.
The Roma boss branded Taylor a 'f***ing disgrace' as he made his way out of the Puskas Arena in Budapest.
Taylor had dished out 12 yellow cards to the players, while also booking Mourinho and three members of his coaching staff.
But the 44-year-old was applauded by former referee Mark Halsey for his performance in an ill-tempered match.
he told Hawkbee and Jacobs on talkSPORT: “You can’t condone the actions of Jose Mourinho, the Roma players and the Sevilla players. I think their behaviour was absolutely appalling.
“That’s going around the world and young children are seeing these babies, the way they act and surround the referee - it was impossible for Anthony Taylor to control.
"I really thought the [refereeing] team did exceptionally well to keep 22 players on the field of play and Anthony refereed the game exceptionally well under extreme pressure from players and team officials.
"It’s difficult in that situation because if you start handing out early yellow cards and sending players off, people will say the referee has ruined the game. Referees do not want to send players off, they can only referee to the way players behave, and their behaviour was appalling.
“They knew what they were doing, Anthony was aware of it and it makes it so difficult for a referee to control a game like that. I felt really sorry for him. You cannot blame the officials, it’s solely down to the players and the coaches.
“I really do hope UEFA charge both clubs, they have to, otherwise it’ll just continue.”
talkSPORT pundit and former Aston Villa captain Gabby Agbonlahor also hit out at the players on the pitch, saying the Roma and Sevilla stars were out of order for their behaviour.
He blasted: "The two benches were an absolute disgrace. Every single foul, both benches would run on the pitch.
"Anthony Taylor must have thought he was in charge of an Under-18s game on a Sunday.
"I thought it was shocking," he continued. "There was more action on the benches than the pitch.
"Quite dirty tactics from Mourinho, I didn't like to watch. Anthony Taylor did a great job."
Taylor made a number of brilliant calls in the game, which saw him book Roma midfielder Lorenzo Pellegrini at the end of the first half for diving after he initiated contact from a Sevilla defender.
He then awarded Sevilla a penalty in the 75th minute after Lucas Ocampos appeared to be fouled by Roma centre-back Roger Ibanez.
But after being advised by Stuart Attwell that the Brazilian may have won part of the ball, Taylor correctly overturned his original call.
And shortly after, he made another correct decision in denying Roma a spot-kick after the Italian outfit appealed for a handball on Fernando.
Despite Nemaja Matic's hitting Fernando, his hand was judged to have been in a natural position.
And in what was his biggest call of the match, he called encroachment on Roma goalkeeper Rui Patricio when he saved Gonzalo Montiel's deciding penalty, with the defender then scoring his retake to win Sevilla the trophy.
Former Chelsea left-back Scott Minto was full of praise for the match official on talkSPORT commentary.
Speaking of Taylor as the game crept towards extra-time, Minto said: "I think Anthony Taylor has been absolutely superb, I really do.
"He's been supported by VAR, I think it was the right decision in the end [to overturn Sevilla's penalty].
"But pretty much every decision he's got spot on, and he's done it in kind of a way with authority.
"I'm just thinking about the man of the match. I think we've got a long way to go yet, but can you give it to a referee?
Minto's co-commentator Jim Proudfoot then hailed Taylor for dealing with constant appeals from both sets of players, as he compared him to retired Italian match official Collina - who's considered to be the best referee of all time.
He remarked: "Yes, he's been like an English Collina, I suppose, in the approach.
"It has been a no-nonsense approach from him, but it's had to be with what's at stake and everything that is going on. Because there are a fair few trying it on."
“The benches were an absolute disgrace!”
“Anthony Taylor must’ve thought it was a Sunday league game. It was shocking!” 🙄