UEFA yet to decide over Real red cards

BERNE - UEFA will complete a routine study of match reports before deciding whether to take any action following Spanish media reports that two Real Madrid players deliberately provoked red cards in the Champions League.

"The UEFA disciplinary services are still looking at the match reports so (there is) no decision on possible disciplinary cases yet," UEFA said in a statement on Wednesday.

Sergio Ramos and Xabi Alonso were both dismissed late in Tuesday's 4-0 win away to Ajax Amsterdam after picking up second yellow cards for time-wasting.

They face automatic one-match suspensions in the final group game against Auxerre, which is a dead match for Real with the Spanish club already assured of first place in Group G and qualification for the last 16.

The red cards mean they will have a clean slate for the next round, assuming UEFA hand them only the mandatory one-match ban.

Spanish sports daily Marca summed up comment across the country's media, saying: "Real Madrid's great match was overshadowed by the self-inflicted sendings-off which had the aim of not accumulating yellow cards before the last sixteen."

However, Ramos denied to the same newspaper that his red card was deliberate.

"We tried to waste a bit of time as we were a man down and, knowing the result, the referee could have avoided showing this card," he said.

Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho did not want to discuss the matter after the game.

"There is no use talking about the cards we received in the final phase," Mourinho said.

He added that he was unhappy with the cards and said: "I talked to a lot of players during the game - not just Ramos and Alonso."

Two years ago, UEFA fined Olympique Lyon players Cris and Juninho 15,000 euros and 10,000 euros respectively for getting deliberately booked during a Champions League match against Fiorentina.

UEFA's disciplinary panel decided that the pair had committed deliberate fouls in order to serve a one-match suspension during their team's meaningless final group stage match against Bayern Munich.

No one from Real Madrid was available to comment on the events of the Ajax game.

Former Real coach Vicente del Bosque, who is now in charge of World Cup winners Spain, was quoted in Spanish media as saying he thought the players had set out to get the cards.

"I think they used a good method to achieve what they had to achieve thinking ahead to future games," Del Bosque said.

"I don't know if it is unsporting, but they have to think of the future and I think they worked it well."


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