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Messi banned for two matches after first red card in Barcelona career

ANI
·1-min read
Lionel Messi in action during the match against Athletic Club. (Photo/ Barcelona Twitter)
Lionel Messi in action during the match against Athletic Club. (Photo/ Barcelona Twitter)

Barcelona [Spain], January 19 (ANI): Argentine striker Lionel Messi on Tuesday was handed a two-match ban following his first red card as a Barcelona player.

The RFEF, who control disciplinary matters in Spain, have said that the six-time Ballon d'Or winner will not have to serve a lengthy suspension for lashing out at Asier Villalibre and as a result, just a two-match ban has been handed, reported Goal.com.

Earlier, it was being said that Messi could face up to 12 games ban as a result of his reckless actions. But a lesser sentence has been handed to the Argentine. The match officials and RFEF have also said that there was no aggression on the part of Messi.

Messi was sent off for the first time in his Barcelona career during the match against Athletic Club on Sunday. The red card was shown to Messi for violent conduct on Asier Villalibre, an incident that was spotted by the VAR, near the end of the clash.

Antoine Griezmann scored the opening goal of the match against Athletic Club, putting Barcelona ahead in the 40th minute.

However, the lead lasted for just two minutes as Oscar de Marcos netted an equaliser. Griezmann then found the back of the net in the 70th minute with Barcelona again taking the lead.

Athletic Club's Asier Villalibre levelled the scores in the 90th minute before Inaki Williams scored the winning goal three minutes later.

Barcelona will now take on Cornella in the Copa del Rey on Friday. (ANI)