Sergio Ramos tactically got himself booked in Real Madrid’s Champions League clash against Ajax a fortnight ago.
The 32-year-old was cautioned in the 89th minute of the round of 16 tie, which Madrid won 2-1. The booking means he will miss the second leg at the Santiago Bernabeu next week.
He suggested in a post-match interview that he picked up the caution intentionally, so as to avoid the risk of a suspension in later rounds of the competition.
The rationale behind Ramos’ decision was questioned, considering Los Blancos progress into the last eight of the Champions League is far from guaranteed
Incidentally, Ramos was sent off in the Madrid’s very next game. The veteran defender picked up two yellow cards in last Sunday’s home defeat to Girona.
Ramos has now been sent off 25 times in his Real Madrid career. He also has 13 yellow cards this season in all competitions.
Charged by UEFA
Despite back-tracking on his post-match comments, Ramos has been formally charged by UEFA.
Real Madrid’s captain charge is “receiving a yellow card on purpose”, which is obviously not allowed.
The charge means that he is now at risk of an additional ban, although this has not been confirmed.
The case will be dealt with by UEFA on February 28.
Should Madrid qualify, it would be quite ironic for Ramos to be suspended for the quarter-finals – the very thing he was trying to avoid happening.
Next up for Ramos and Barcelona is their Copa del Rey 2nd leg clash against Barcelona. The semi-final tie is level at 1-1 on aggregate.