Real v Barca

Iniesta escapes one-game ban

April 20, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta has been cleared of picking up a deliberate yellow card against Shakhtar Donetsk and will not face any action from UEFA's disciplinary committee.

Xabi Alonso and Sergio Ramos were both punished for deliberate red cards earlier in the season
GettyImagesXabi Alonso and Sergio Ramos were both punished for deliberate red cards earlier in the season

• Iniesta facing suspension

Iniesta is now free to line-up against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu on April 27.

Iniesta had been reported by UEFA officials for forcing a booking in the first leg, which meant he was suspended for the return match in the Ukraine and he would not face the possibility of missing a semi-final tie.

A statement on Barcelona's official website read: "UEFA has announced that it will not be suspending the midfielder.

"FC Barcelona appealed to the governing body of European football against the proposal to ban the player for an additional match as a result of the yellow card shown in the quarter-final of the Champions League against Shakhtar on April 6.

"Iniesta will therefore be able to play in the Champions League semi-final against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu. UEFA have also announced that he will not face any financial penalty."

Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho was angered that Iniesta seemed set to get away with it, especially after Xabi Alonso and Sergio Ramos were both fined for similar, if more blantant, offences towards the end of the group stage.

Last week, Mourinho said: "You have to find why Mourinho cannot clean yellow cards but other coaches can."

Barca pair Victor Valdes and Sergio Busquets also picked up seemingly deliberate bookings against Villarreal in La Liga to make sure they would not miss a game against Real.