soccer

Ronaldo handed three-match ban for violent play

Real Madrid star free to play in tonight’s cup clash against Atlético

The LFP disciplinary committee has slapped Cristiano Ronaldo with a three-match ban following his actions in Real Madrid’s 1-1 tie against Athletic Bilbao at the weekend.

The Portuguese star received one match for the red card he was shown due to violent conduct and two more for the dissent he showed toward the fourth official – he repeatedly brought the palm of his hand to his cheek — in reaction to his dismissal.

The red card he received during the game came after Ronaldo pushed Athletic’s Carlos Gurpegui away by the forehead and subsequently butted heads with another Bilbao player, Ander Iturraspe. The latter was shown a yellow card. All the match bans will be served in the Liga, meaning Ronaldo is clear to play in Real’s King’s Cup semifinal against cross-city rival Atlético tonight.

The development is a blow to Real Madrid's Liga title aspirations, however. The team is currently three points behind Atlético.