Messi could face four match ban

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Barcelona captain Lionel Messi could be banned for up to four games after receiving the first red card of his Barcelona career during Sunday’s Spanish Supercopa final against Athletic Bilbao.

Barca lost the match 3-2 in extra-time and the Argentine player was sent off for lashing out at Bilbao striker Asier Villalibre in frustration.

The Royal Spanish Football Federation’s competition committee will meet this week to decide the length of Messi’s suspension.

The 33-year-old is certain to miss two matches but that could be doubled, depending on how the competition committee categorise the dismissal.

Sunday’s red card was the first Messi has received while playing for Barca’s first team, a length of 753 matches.

It was the fourth of his career, though, following one dismissal for Barca B in 2005 and two with Argentina, including one on his international debut that same year.

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By Ofhani Munyai

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