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The Spanish Appeals Committee has rejected Barcelona’s appeal to reduce Neymar’s three-game La Liga ban.
As reported by Marca, the decision means the Brazilian is set to miss Sunday’s Clasico showdown at the Santiago Bernabeu with Real Madrid. It’s suggested Barca’s only chance of getting Neymar to play in the game now rests with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
“It’ll now be a race against the clock for Barcelona to get their paperwork to the CAS to review his case before the closing on Friday,” Marca noted.
Neymar was slapped with the suspension after he was given his marching orders in Barcelona’s La Liga loss against Malaga.
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The Brazilian was dismissed for two bookable offences, which carries an automatic one-match ban in the Spanish top flight. However, it was Neymar’s conduct as he left the pitch, when he sarcastically applauded an official, that saw the extra two games added.
Per BBC Sport, RFEF, who are the governing body of Spanish football, said the player’s conduct showed “attitudes of contempt or disregard for referees.”
The decision makes it increasingly unlikely that Neymar will feature in what is shaping up to be one of the biggest games of the season.
Given the thrust, inventiveness and class he offers from the left flank, the Brazilian will be a massive absence; per Squawka Football, Neymar is a player always looking to carry the fight to opponents:
Squawka Football @Squawka
Neymar attempted 20 take-ons vs. Juventus. TWENTY! 😳
The rest of the Barcelona side attempted 18 combined… https://t.co/8OaES1YjpK
4/19/2017, 9:23:37 PM
Barcelona need to win at the Bernabeu, too. With the UEFA Champions League gone after their elimination against Juventus, La Liga has to be the team’s priority. But they trail leaders Real Madrid by three points having played a game more.
Needless to say, their chances of success would have been boosted if they were able to call upon the Brazilian on Sunday evening. The situation is beginning to look increasingly desperate for the 25-year-old and, potentially, his team too.
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