Real Masdrid manager Carlo Ancelotti is set to sit out two La Liga matches after being handed out a punishment for supposedly taunting a referee in their match against Valencia.
The Royal Spanish Football Federation’s Competition Committee announced the decision in a statement released Wednesday. The committee’s statement read “To address the referees, executives or sports authorities in terms or with attitudes of contempt or disregard, provided the action does not constitute a more serious offence, is punishable with a suspension of two to three matches or for a period of up to a month.”
Ancelotti was meted the penalty after he supposedly made a sarcastic clapping gesture towards referee Carlos Clos Gomez at the end of Real’s match against Valencia, with the two teams settling for a 2-2 draw. According to Clos Gomez, Ancelotti was insistently clapping at him, with a strong look of disapproval in the 44-year old manager’s face. The referee added that Ancelotti went on to repeat the unruly gesture towards one of the assistant referees.
Real has been highly critical of the officiating during the match. Defender Pepe insisted in a post game interview that “football is a contact sport” and said that he didn’t understand why he was awarded a yellow card after as push in the later part of the match. He also noted that they were given a lot of fouls by Clos Gomez, but Valencia midfielder Andre Gomes managed to get away with several of his own.
The team is expected to appeal the decision but, unless they are successful in their move, Ancelotti is expected to not see the matches against Espanyol and Getafe. Meanwhile, the draw put Real’s campaign for the title in a not so good position, with them trailing four points behind league leaders Barcelona in the scoreboards with only two games remaining.