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Messi banned for four international matches

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Messi banned for four international matches
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Argentina forward Lionel Messi has been banned from the Albiceleste’s next four competitive internationals for swearing at a match official in Thursday’s 1-0 win over Chile

The decision means the 29-year-old will play in only one of Argentina’s remaining five World Cup qualifiers, a severe blow to the two-times world champions who are struggling on the road to Russia 2018.

Argentina are currently sitting third in the 10-team South American group with 22 points from 13 games but have only a two-point cushion over sixth-placed Chile.

The top four qualify directly for next year’s football extravaganza with the fifth side having to lock horns with a team from a different confederation for another place.

Messi will be eligible again when Argentina visit Ecuador on October 10.