Neymar out of Copa America with a four-match ban
Brazil captain Neymar was thrown out of the rest of the Copa America on Friday after being slapped with a four-match ban for headbutting a Colombian opponent.
South American football’s governing body CONMEBOL confirmed the 23-year-old’s punishment following a hearing in Santiago to address Neymar’s dismissal following Brazil’s 1-0 defeat to Colombia on Wednesday.
The Brazilian ace was shown a red card after appearing to aim a headbutt at Colombian goalscorer Jeison Murillo when an ugly brawl erupted after the final whistle of a stormy Group C game.
Neymar had already been given a provisional one-match suspension, ruling him out of Brazil’s final group tie against Venezuela on Sunday, after collecting his second yellow card of the tournament. But while a heavier sentence was always possible at Friday’s hearing, few had predicted that tournament chiefs would throw the book at the Barcelona striker, one of the most recognisable stars of world football.
Neymar, who was also fined $10,000, can appeal the punishment.
But unless the ban is reduced it means he has played his last game of the tournament, with Brazil having a maximum of only four games left. Colombian player Carlos Bacca, who shoved Neymar following his butt on Murillo, was suspended for two games, CONMEBOL confirmed.