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Cristiano Ronaldo’s five most controversial red cards

Published at :April 13, 2024 at 5:37 PM
Modified at :April 13, 2024 at 5:37 PM
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(Courtesy : Al Nassr)

Manav Chowdhury


The five-time Ballon d’Or winner is one of the greatest footballers of all time

Footballers throughout the world have seen the wrath of the referee’s decision to send off players in important matches in the form of the dreaded red card. Ronaldo’s red card was frequently discussed among football fans. Cristiano Ronaldo is not known for his anger on the pitch.

But he failed to avoid such things altogether in certain instances. Over the years, he has faced several dismissals for various reasons, illustrating his intense passion and occasional frustration on the pitch. Despite these occasional disciplinary issues, Ronaldo’s exceptional skill and commitment to the sport are unquestionable.

Here are the top five of Cristiano Ronaldo’s most controversial red cards:

5. Real Madrid vs Athletic Bilbao: February 2014

Ronaldo was involved in a scuffle with the opposition’s defender Carlos Gurpegi. Replays showed the Madrid star player laying his fist on Gurpegi’s head. Ronaldo was forced to serve a three-match ban following the incident. Cristiano Ronaldo was fresh off of receiving the FIFA Ballon d’Or and was at that time the top goalscorer in the LaLiga.

4. Real Madrid vs Atletico Madrid: May 2013

The year 2013 was a great year for Ronaldo as he was already on the way to becoming a legend of the club but this red card incident was tough to accept for him. Real Madrid played their arch-rivals Atletico Madrid and lost 2-1 at the Santiago Bernabeu. Ronaldo, arguably the team’s leader, was not of much help, receiving a direct red card after he kicked Atletico captain Gabi in the face during the final stages of the game. Atletico’s victory over their arch-rival was their first victory in the derby in 14 years.

3. Manchester United vs Manchester City: January 2006

Ronaldo received his second red card of his career in a game against United’s eternal rivals, Manchester City. Only this time Ronaldo was given a direct red card. It didn’t help his relationship with the fans that the card was a consequence of a brutal tackle on former United star Andy Cole. To make matters worse, Manchester City defeated their arch-rival by a 3-1 scoreline.

2. Aston Villa vs Manchester United: May 2004

In this game against Aston Villa, Ronaldo received two yellow cards. The first was given to him for diving, the second was for time wasting. This was to be Ronaldo’s first red card offence. Fortunately, the club successfully disputed the second yellow card decision, meaning Ronaldo was not forced to serve a suspension.

1. Al Nassr vs Al Hilal: Saudi Super Cup Semifinals April 2024

The Al Nassr’s superstar lost his temper in the closing stages of a Saudi Super Cup semi-final clash against their rival Al-Hilal. After throwing an elbow at centre-back Ali Al-Bulaihi, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner was dismissed with four minutes left on the clock.

Eventually, Al Nassr lost to Al Hilal by 2-1, the report that the match referee posted claims that Ronaldo used “excessive force” when striking an opponent, leading to him being sent off. He will face a two-match ban for this incident.

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