Former referee Graham Poll stunned by Messi four game ban

In a Daily Mail article he wrote that FIFA's sanction appears to contravene the rules of the game

He thinks that because the officials saw but ignored the incident at the time, Messi shouldn't be punished

Graham Poll no considera adecuada la sanción a Leo Messi
Graham Poll no considera adecuada la sanción a Leo Messi | EFE

Former referee Graham Poll has was surprised by the huge four-game ban FIFA have issued Lionel Messi for swearing at an assistant referee.

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The Argentina No 10 will miss three more matches after sitting out the 2-0 defeat by Bolivia on Tuesday night, which leaves his team in a tough spot as they try to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. 

Poll claims FIFA’s ban was against the laws of the game because they used video evidence to see something the officials ignored at the time. 

He wrote in the Daily Mail: “Players who abuse match officials should be sent off and suspended — but I am amazed Lionel Messi has been given a four-match ban.

“The Argentine appeared to use insulting and offensive language towards the assistant referee against Chile last week. He was clearly annoyed at being penalised for a foul but, despite his animated protests, he was not sanctioned at the time.

“However, a FIFA disciplinary committee has watched video evidence and decided to impose the ban, which I believe is against the laws of the game.”

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