January 18, 2021

Messi Shown First Red Card of Barcelona Career

Lionel Messi has received the first sending off of his Barcelona career for punching an opponent during the club’s 3-2 defeat to Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish Super Cup final on Sunday, 17 January 2021.

Just moments before the end of the match, a frustrated Messi made a dangerous tackle against Asier Villalibre, who scored a 90th-minute equaliser, which contributed to denying the Catalan giants victory.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner was initially given a yellow card, but a Video Assistant Referee (VAR) room advised the referee to review the incident on the pitch-side monitor.

After the VAR review, the match official confirmed that Messi had hit his opponent, and that he had no choice but to send Messi off the pitch with a straight red. 

This is the Argentine’s first red card in all competitions for Barcelona since he joined at the age of 13.

The 33-year-old forward could now face at least a four-game suspension. The ban length will be determined by the Spanish FA. 

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