Soccer: Messi banned for four international matches

Soccer: Messi banned for four international matches

Lionel Messi has been banned for four international matches by FIFA for verbally abusing an assistant referee during Argentina’s win over Chile.

The Barcelona forward has been handed a four-game punishment and won’t be allowed to play against Bolivia, Uruguay, Paraguay and Venezuela – all because of a sweary altercation with a match official.

The game will be played at Estadio Hernando Siles in La Paz, and will tough enough as it is due to the breathtaking altitude. It is a retrospective punishment for insulting Brazilian assistant ref Dewson Silva during Argentina’s 1-0 win over Chile last week.

Messi was caught on camera referring to the “the c*** of [Silva’s] mother” after a decision was given against him. Match referee Sandro Ricci didn’t see or hear the incident and so the retrospective punishment was permissible.