Cristiano Ronaldo Suspended For Three La Liga Games Following Red Card

Cristiano Ronaldo was left seeing red on Sunday against Athletic de Bilbao and has been slammed with a three-game suspension after he shoved the Lions’ captain Carlos Gurpegi on a play inside the penalty box.

In the controversial decision — one that many are now questioning — the Real Madrid captain was ejected from the game at around the 75th minute, after the ref first showed him a yellow, then a red card.

Cristiano case: a video (by Cuatro) shows that Ronaldo gesture was not aimed at fourth official. (marca) pic.twitter.com/aCCSXNrXLf

— SocialRMadrid (@SocialRMadrid) February 4, 2014

Before the ruling came down Carlo Ancelotti, Madrid’s coach, was confident there would be no suspension other than the expulsion from the game on Sunday and expected the Portuguese star to play Wednesday, according to the Associated Press.

The AP report suggested earlier that there is precedent following a suspension on top of a red card for making an inappropriate gesture. In this case Cristiano Ronaldo slapped his face after the ref showed him the card, which was interpreted as a suggestion that the umpire had a lot of nerve.

Speaking about the possibility of a four-game suspension for the Ballon d’Or winner, Ancelotti said:

“I don’t think we’ll have to wait for the committee’s decision because I’m sure his ban won’t be serious. Cristiano will start the game tomorrow (…) I don’t think it was such bad gesture. The player was unhappy because the red was an exaggeration after he received the provocation he receives in every game. He’s provoked and fouled so much in every match.”

Ancelotti: Cristiano Ronaldo will start tomorrow. #HalaMadrid

— SocialRMadrid (@SocialRMadrid) February 4, 2014

Some believe that having Cristiano Ronaldo benched for additional games could actually be a good thing for Real Madrid and give its other stars the opportunity to show what they can do.

The suspension doesn’t affect the Copa del Rey semifinal game on Wednesday against Atletico Madrid.

“I don’t think it was such bad gesture,” Ancelotti further defended Cristiano Ronaldo. “The player was unhappy because the red was an exaggeration after he received the provocation he receives in every game. He’s provoked and fouled so much in every match.”

Do you think Cristiano Ronaldo deserved the red card and three game suspension?