Spain’s Sports Administrative Court on Wednesday upheld Barcelona striker Robert Lewandowski’s three-match ban, ruling him out of Sunday’s Spanish league match against Atlético Madrid.
The suspension was lifted by the disputes court after Barcelona appealed. The Polish striker was allowed to play in his 1-1 league match against Espanyol last weekend.
Espanyol later contested the derby result, saying the derby had been damaged by the unexpected decision of a Madrid court to temporarily lift his suspension.
Lewandowski was sent off after receiving consecutive yellow cards in the league match in Osasuna on 8 November. At first he was given a one-match suspension, but the Spanish Federation’s competition committee later said he was ‘disrespectful’ to the referee after the player’s ‘expulsion’.
Referee Gil Manzano wrote in the match report that Manzano interpreted Lewandowski’s gesture of pointing his nose twice and then giving the referee a thumbs up as disrespectful. Lewandowski said the gesture was directed at the coach, not the referee.
Lewandowski will also miss the games against Getafe and Girona. He will be available for next week’s Spanish Super Cup match.
After 15 games, Barcelona are level with league leaders Real Madrid on points.
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