Saturday, June 30, 2012

30 June 2006 - Try To Calculate That Cards-Per-Minute Ratio

On 30 June 2006, Argentina left back Leandro Cufré achieved the dubious distinction of receiving a red card after a match in which he hadn't even played.

The match in question was a World Cup quarter-final, which Argentina lost to Germany on penalties, 1-1 (4-2). It had been a tense affair, with referee Ľuboš Micheľ issuing a total of seven yellow cards, four to Argentina and three to Germany. The first one--to German striker Lukas Podolski--came in just the third minute, while Micheľ showed four of them after the 88-minute mark.

After goalkeeper Jens Lehmann ended the shootout by saving the attempt from midfielder Esteban Cambiasso, the two sides clashed near the touchline. According to a BBC report, "[p]unches and kicks were thrown between both sides," but the only player to receive a card was Cufré, an unused Argentina substitute for the match. He kicked German defender Per Mertesacker in the knee to become the first player to receive a  post-match red card in World Cup history.

Afterward, FIFA fined Cufré 10,000 Swiss francs and suspended him for four matches.

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