Red Cards Mar 2021 AFCON Round Of 16 Games

The AFCON was tagged by many as a “tournament of red cards” following the number of players that were sent off in the competition.


The Round of 16 games at the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) ended on Wednesday but the first phase of the knockout fixtures was marred by red cards.

Sixteen teams played eight matches, beginning from Sunday, as they sought a place in the quarter-final of Africa’s premier football competition in Cameroon. Seven red cards were issued in eight games in the Round of 16 encounters, raising questions about the quality of officiating at the AFCON.

They were five red cards in the first four games of the round. In fact, there were two in the game between Guinea and Gambia – one for each side –and the same number in the clash between Senegal and Cape Verde which saw Ibrahima Conte and Yusupha Njie given the marching orders. It was only during the last batch of matches on Wednesday that no player was sent off.

In the first knockout game between Burkina Faso and Gabon, Sydney Obiza was sent off for a second bookable offence after pushing down Issa Kabore in the box. Burkina Faso went on to win the game 7-6 on penalties after it ended 1-1.

Nigeria’s Alex Iwobi was later sent off in the second match of the night when the Super Eagles lost 0-1 to Tunisia. The former Arsenal player, who came on as a second-half substitute, was initially booked for a challenge on Youssef Msakni. But a VAR review changed the decision and Iwobi was handed a red card, minutes after he entered the pitch.

The following day, things took another turn when three red cards were dished out in two matches. Both Guinea and Gambia had one player sent off as the Scorpions battled to reach the last eight.

On Wednesday, the situation reached another level when Cape Verde ended with nine men in the defeat to tournament-favourite, Senegal. Two goals were enough to send the 2002 finalists to the quarter-final in the Central African nation. The Teranga Lions may have won the match but the highlights of the tie were two red cards given to the Blue Sharks. Captain Patrick Andrade was the first to be sent off in the 20th minute when he challenged Paris Saint Germain (PSG)’s Idrissa Gueye. After consulting VAR, the referee sent him off.

They got a second one when goalkeeper, Vozinha, was red-carded. The Cape Verde man had a head collision with Liverpool’s Sadio Mane nine minutes into the second half after an attempt to stop the striker. A VAR check was needed before the goalkeeper was sent off!

The development triggered conservations among football fans with many questioning the quality of officiating in the AFCON. One of the most vocal was former Ghanaian international, Mikel Essien, who described the situation as “shocking”.

‘Officiating Wasn’t Fair’

“Some of these red card decisions in #AFCON are shocking,” the former Chelsea star, tweeted days after his country crashed out of the competition.  “Is football getting soft???”

In the wake of Nigeria’s ouster from the biennial event, the Super Eagles coach, Austine Eguavoen, faulted the centre referee for the red card on Iwobi.

“It was clear that the officiating wasn’t fair,” Eguavoen said about Maguette Ndiaye’s outing in Garoua. “I won’t criticise the referee because they are masters of the game, but Alex Iwobi’s red card wasn’t fair. The foul wasn’t an intentional one.”

Although the Confederations of Africa Football (CAF) has not commented on the matter, fans are worried that since most of the red cards were issued after VAR reviews, match officials might be struggling with the new technology which was introduced for the first time in all AFCON games.

CAF had in the past used VAR from the quarter-finals – starting from Egypt 2019. But in an early January statement, the football body said for “the first time in the history of the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations, all 52 matches of the competition will use Video Assistant Referee (VAR)”.

Neymar’s Fate To Be Known This Week After Marseille Red Card

Paris Saint-Germain’s Brazilian forward Neymar walks off the pitch after a red card during the French L1 football match between Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) and Marseille (OM) at the Parc de Princes stadium in Paris on September 13, 2020. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP)


Neymar’s punishment for being one of five players sent off following a brawl at the end of Paris Saint-Germain’s defeat to Marseille will be revealed on Wednesday, the French Football League (LFP) said Monday.

The world’s most expensive footballer was shown the red card in stoppage time of the 1-0 loss at the Parc des Princes alongside teammates Layvin Kurzawa and Leandro Paredes, as well as Marseille’s Dario Benedetto and Jordan Amavi.

Neymar insisted Alvaro Gonzalez called him a “monkey” in a series of furious tweets late on Sunday after he was dismissed for slapping the Marseille defender on the back of the head.

“Look at the racism. That’s why I hit him,” Neymar, who was returning from coronavirus quarantine, said as he left the pitch. Gonzalez later denied making a racist comment.

“The only regret I have is not hitting this idiot in the face,” Neymar then posted after the game, before replying to a Gonzalez tweet to call him a “racist”.

The LFP’s disciplinary commission, which will decide the punishments, could investigate the Brazilian’s accusations against Gonzalez, who Marseille claim was spat on by Angel Di Maria.

Any racist behaviour carries a maximum suspension of 10 matches.

Spitting directed at another player can lead to a ban of up to six matches.

Kurzawa meanwhile could be suspended for up to seven matches for violent conduct after aiming a punch at opposition full-back Amavi.


Red Card Warning For Deliberate Coughing In Football

Referee Anthony Taylor (C) shows a red card to Chelsea’s Croatian midfielder Mateo Kovacic (2L) during the English FA Cup final football match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium in London, on August 1, 2020. (Photo by Catherine Ivill / POOL / AFP) 



Footballers can be sent off if referees judge they have coughed deliberately at opponents or match officials in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, say the sport’s rule-makers and England’s Football Association.

The International Football Association Board (IFAB) said it was up to the referee to judge whether he felt the cough was an abusive gesture.


FC Porto’s Portuguese coach Sergio Conceicao (C) argues with an assistant referee after receiving a red card during the ‘Taca de Portugal’ (Portugal’s Cup) final football match between SL Benfica and FC Porto at the City Stadium of Coimbra on August 1, 2020. (Photo by CARLOS COSTA / AFP)

IFAB classified deliberate coughing as similar to “using offensive, insulting or abusive language and/or gestures”.

“As with all offences, the referee has to make a judgement about the true nature of the offence,” it said.

“If it were clearly accidental, then the referee would not take action nor if the ‘cough’ took place with a large distance between the players.

“However, where it is close enough to be clearly offensive, then the referee can take action.”


Lyon’s Brazilian midfielder Thiago Mendes (L) is shown a red card during the French League Cup final football match between Paris Saint-Germain vs Olympique Lyonnais at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis on July 31, 2020. (Photo by GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT / AFP)


The FA’s guidance for grassroots football in England will come into force immediately.

“If the incident was not severe enough to merit a sending-off, a caution could be issued for ‘unsporting behaviour’,” it wrote in a document.


Saint-Etienne’s French defender Loic Perrin (C) receives a rec card from French referee Amaury Delerue (R) during the French Cup final football match between Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) and Saint-Etienne (ASSE) on July 24, 2020, at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, outside Paris. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP)

It added referees must not look to punish “routine” coughing and “action can only be supported where it is evident it was a clear act against someone else”.


Referee Martin Atkinson (2R) shows the red card to Leicester City’s Northern Irish defender Jonny Evans (2L) during the English Premier League football match between Leicester City and Manchester United at King Power Stadium in Leicester, central England on July 26, 2020. (Photo by CARL RECINE / POOL / AFP) 

Messi Given One-Match Ban For Copa America Red Card


Argentina star Lionel Messi was hit with a one-game suspension by South American football bosses over his dismissal during the Copa America third-place play-off against Chile earlier this month.

However, CONMEBOL made no mention of Messi’s “corruption” accusation against the regional governing body that he made after receiving his red card.

Messi was harshly dismissed in the first half of Argentina’s 2-1 win over Chile after a clash with defender Gary Medel.

Television images suggested Messi did nothing wrong as Medel appeared to repeatedly try, unsuccessfully, to headbutt the Barcelona forward.

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While most observers acknowledged that the Chile captain deserved to be sent off, Paraguayan referee Mario Diaz de Vivar controversially also gave Messi his marching orders.

CONMEBOL’s disciplinary commission hit Messi with “an automatic one-match suspension,” adding late on Tuesday that it could not be appealed by the Argentine Football Association (AFA).

It means the 32-year-old five-time Ballon d’Or winner will miss the first of Argentina’s qualification matches for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, due to be played in March. He was also fined $1,500.

“Corruption and the referees are preventing people from enjoying the football and they’re ruining it a bit,” Messi said after the Chile match.

Messi had also hit out at the organizers after Argentina’s semi-final elimination against hosts Brazil in their previous match.

“Brazil were the hosts and they’re managing a lot in CONMEBOL these days, which makes it complicated” for everyone else, Messi had said after his side were denied what appeared like two clear penalties in a 2-0 defeat.

The CONMEBOL commission made no mention, however, of Messi’s comments, for which he was expected to face harsher punishment.

The announcement came after CONMEBOL, earlier on Tuesday, sanctioned AFA president Claudio Tapia for his blistering attack on Ecuadoran referee Roddy Zambrano, who had refused to consult VAR over the two Argentine penalty claims in their 2-0 defeat to Brazil.

Tapia had hit out at “serious and gross refereeing mistakes” while questioning whether “the principles of ethics, loyalty and transparency” had been observed during the match.

CONMEBOL stripped Tapia of his role as the regional body’s representative on the FIFA executive committee.


Juventus March On But Ronaldo Faces Further Punishment For Red Card

Juventus’ Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo (L) cries next to Juventus’ Italian midfielder Federico Bernardeschi after receiving a red card during the UEFA Champions League group H football match between Valencia CF and Juventus FC at the Mestalla stadium in Valencia on September 19, 2018. JOSE JORDAN / AFP


Cristiano Ronaldo should escape an increase on his one-match ban in the Champions League but Juventus’ star summer signing might not get off so easily in the race for the Ballon d’Or.

Ronaldo is among the frontrunners for the prestigious prize, which considers performances during the calendar year, as well as “overall behaviour on and off the pitch.”

He was sent off against Valencia on Wednesday, after aiming a petulant kick at defender Jeison Murillo, before appearing to make contact with his opponent’s head as he gestured to him to get up.

Despite playing for more than an hour with 10 men, Juve were comfortable 2-0 winners at the Estadio Mestalla as Miralem Pjanic converted a pair of penalties either side of half-time.

Ronaldo, however, is yet to discover the full consequences of his dismissal. The 33-year-old was perhaps unfortunate that German referee Felix Brych opted for a red, rather than a yellow, card but there was still risk in engaging with Murillo.

Journalists in charge of voting for the Ballon d’Or might also take note of Ronaldo’s reaction, which saw him fall to the ground in disbelief and then yell into the air in frustration.

It was a bad night in an otherwise stellar 2018 for the Portuguese, who won the Champions League with Real Madrid in May and has scored 36 goals in 33 games this year. He has won the Ballon d’Or five times, the joint most with Lionel Messi.

This was Ronaldo’s 11th red card, but first in the Champions League, with a suspension now set to reduce his scoring power in the group stages.

A one-match ban is guaranteed, meaning he will sit out Juve’s game at home to Young Boys on October 2.

UEFA’s Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body can also increase the ban if they deem it a “serious offence”, which could mean him missing the fixtures against Manchester United on October 23 and November 6.

AFP Sport understands, however, that an extension to the one-match ban is unlikely. Juventus would also be allowed to appeal.

The Italian side’s coach Massimiliano Allegri lamented the lack of a Video Assistant Referee against Valencia, which he believes would have spared his key player.

UEFA’s Executive Committee are due to meet in Lyon on September 27, where it is believed the issue of implementing VAR will be discussed.

“I can only say that VAR would’ve helped the referee make the right decision,” Allegri said.

Juventus midfielder Blaise Matuidi urged UEFA to show leniency. “It was very harsh, I think if you saw the replays, you could see it’s an incomprehensible decision,” Matuidi said.

“So I hope afterward UEFA will watch the replays and that we can have something positive for him because he does not deserve it.

“He was sad after the match, very sad, and we were all sad for him.”

Juve defender Leonardo Bonucci added, “Ronaldo was quite angry, unfortunately, the referee did not see the situation very well. The important thing is we reacted as a team.”

PSG Star Mbappe Banned For Three Matches After Red Card

Paris Saint-Germain’s French forward Kylian Mbappe                                   Photo: FRANCK FIFE / AFP


French teenage sensation Kylian Mbappe has been suspended for three matches after his red card against Nimes last weekend, the French league announced on Wednesday.

The 19-year-old, who also scored in the 4-2 win, was sent off for pushing over Teji Savanier after the Nimes player hacked him to the ground.

The French champions will be without Mbappe for Ligue 1 games against Saint-Etienne on September 14, Rennes on September 23 and Reims three days later.

The ban does not affect Mbappe’s participation in PSG’s mouthwatering Champions League opener against last season’s runners-up Liverpool at Anfield on Tuesday, September 18.

Savanier, who was also dismissed by referee Jerome Brisard after the incident, has been handed a five-match suspension.

Mbappe had already been booked in the first half of the encounter last Saturday for taking the ball away before a Nimes free-kick.

It is the second red card of Mbappe’s young career after he was sent off in January for a bad foul on Rennes’ Ismaila Sarr during a French League Cup semi-final.

In this file photograph taken on January 30, 2018, Paris Saint-Germain’s French forward Kylian Mbappe (L) reacts as the referee gives him a red card during the French League Cup football semi-final match between Rennes and Paris Saint-Germain at the Roazhon Park stadium in Rennes. 


As he is currently with the France squad preparing for Thursday’s UEFA Nations League opener against Germany in Munich, he was not present at Wednesday’s disciplinary hearing.

Mbappe was named the best young player of the tournament after scoring four goals as France won the World Cup for the second time in July, becoming only the second teenager after Brazilian legend Pele to net in a World Cup final.

He has already scored four goals in just three appearances for PSG this season.


Get Ready To Give PDP Red Card, Tinubu Tells Ekiti Residents


The National leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, has called on Ekiti residents to get ready to give the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) a red card, come July 14, 2018.

Tinubu said this on Tuesday, during the APC campaign, for the flag bearer in Ekiti governorship elections, Kayode Fayemi.

He called on members of the APC in Ekiti to equip themselves with their PVC noting that it is their tool to give PDP a red card.

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“What is the value of your stay here if you have no Permanent Voters registration Card (PVC)? That is your red card. On Election Day, that is when you will give PDP red card.

“This is a broom revolution. When I say APC, you say change. This is the only place where change is necessary. After that, what next, when we say APC, you say progress.”

Tinubu said further that Fayemi is fit to rule Ekiti State because he was once a governor of the state and also served as a Minister of the Federal Republic.

“Fayemi is your son. He is a friend of the President, vote Fayemi 100%,” he concluded.

Fayemi, a former Minister of Steel and Solid Minerals and ex-governor of the state, is seeking a second term in office as governor.

After serving as governor of the state from 2010 to 2014, Fayemi was denied a second term by incumbent governor, Ayodele Fayose, of the PDP.

Although Fayose is not contesting in the election, he is backing his deputy, Professor Kolapo Olusola to succeed him, setting the state up for another keenly contested election on July 14, 2018.

Brazilian Match Abandoned After Brawl And Nine Red Cards

A Brazilian state football championship match had to be abandoned after a mass brawl led to nine red cards — and there could be more punishments coming, authorities said on Monday.

Bahia and Vitoria clashed on Sunday in the Bahia state championship, in the north-east of Brazil, when mayhem erupted.

The spark came after Bahia equalized three minutes into the second half and goalscorer Vinicius celebrated with a vulgar gesture that simulated sex. In response, Vitoria goalkeeper Fernando Miguel confronted Vinicius, causing a ruckus.

Seven players were sent off for their part in the brawl, while two more players were sent off later in the match, after which the referee abandoned the game with 11 minutes still to play as Vitoria had only six players left on the pitch.

Football rules state that games cannot continue unless both teams have at least seven players — it means Bahia will likely be awarded a 3-0 victory.

“The attitude of our goalkeeper was provocative and triggered the fight,” admitted Vitoria’s president, Ricardo David, on Sport TV.

“From there on it was general. There were no saints. Everyone is guilty and they deserve to be punished.”

That may now happen. The Bahia Football Federation said on Monday it would act “within the limits” of its authority and send a report to the state court to see what disciplinary measures might be taken.



Evra Red-Carded Before Game For Karate Kick On Fan

Marseille’s French defender Patrice Evra (C) leaves the pitch after an incident with Marseille supporters before the start of the UEFA Europa League group I football match Vitoria SC vs Marseille at D. Afonso Henriques stadium in Guimaraes on November 2, 2017. MIGUEL RIOPA / AFP

Marseille defender Patrice Evra was sent off after launching a karate-style kick at a supporter ahead of Thursday’s match against Vitoria Guimaraes in the Europa League.

Evra was engaged in a heated exchange with a group of fans from an area reserved for Marseille supporters in Portugal before aiming a head-high kick at one of them, an AFP reporter observed.

Stewards at the ground quickly intervened to break up the trouble, with Evra, who was originally listed as a substitute, ordered to return to the dressing room by the referee.

The 36-year-old former Manchester United defender has received heavy criticism for his performances this season and lost his place in the team to on-loan Aston Villa left-back Jordan Amavi.


Osaze faces three-match ban

Super Eagle striker, Peter Odemwingie faces a three-match ban after he received a straight red card for kicking Sascha Reither in West Bromwich Albion’s 0-3 defeat to Fulham in the Barclays English Premier League on Saturday.

The score was 1-0 to Fulham at the time of Odemwingie’s misconduct after Dimitar Berbatov bagged his first goal for the Cottagers.

The striker, who scored on the opening day of the season, shocked all when he lashed out at an unsuspecting Reither leaving the referee with little option but to send him off.

Odemwingie, who will miss his club’s next three matches, has now apologised for his actions.

“I lost my temper. I’m a professional and should have kept my cool, but it happens,” he said.

He further revealed that he wanted to foul Reither without any malicious intent.

“I wanted to foul the player because I thought he was angry towards me. But I should cool my emotions.

“I’ve said sorry to the players and to the staff. It’s a lesson to learn.

“I am looking at the incident in a different way now.

“That moment went very fast for me, I felt a kick on my ankle and felt an injustice that the linesman was so close but nothing was given.

“But now I think it was my fault. I lost my temper. I’m a professional and should have kept my cool, but it happens. It’s not my habit.”
Meanwhile, the WBA manager, Steve Clarke has refused to criticise the 31-year old Nigerian.

“We’re all human – we have emotions. Peter felt he had been fouled, felt it was a free kick and reacted in the wrong way. The red card is there and he has accepted the punishment, we all have to accept it and move on,” he said.