The strangest red card ever? Neymar sent off for putting on mask of himself

Friday 08 April 2011 00:00

Wayne Rooney may be feeling hard done by after being handed a two-match ban for foul language, but he can consider himself fortunate next to Brazilian prodigy Neymar. The striker was sent off on Wednesday for marking a goal by wearing a mask – of his own face.

The 19-year-old scored a brilliant solo effort for Santos in a Copa Libertadores match against Colo Colo that finished 3-2. He jinked through the defence before chipping past the goalkeeper to put Santos 3-0 up. He then put on the mask, which was handed to him from the crowd, with the face upside-down. The referee showed Neymar his second yellow card.

Neymar protested furiously but to no avail. The dismissal sparked chaotic scenes that led to four more red cards.

The masks were distributed at the Vila Belmiro stadium by one of Neymar's sponsors. "Neymar was sent off for not knowing the rules... we need to know the rules," said the club's manager Marcelo Martelotte.

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