London, July 24 (IANS) Argentina captain Lionel Messi has been handed a fine of $1,500 for his inflamatory comments about CONMEBOL — South America’s football governing body — at this year’s edition of Copa America.
Besides the fine, Messi will also serve a one-game suspension for the red card he received against Chile in the competition’s third-place match, reports goal.com.
Messi had said that he and his team were the victims of “corruption” after the forward was sent off for an altercation with Gary Medel during the first half of Argentina’s 2-1 defeat of Chile.
He had also said the tournament was “set up” for Brazil, whose 2-0 semifinal defeat of Argentina was marked by refereeing controversies.
CONMEBOL had responded to Messi’s comments and had accused the Barcelona star of a “lack of respect.”
Messi’s ban is expected to be served in Argentina’s first qualifier for the 2022 World Cup.