FIFA clears Ronaldo over yellow card
ZURICH (AP) — Cristiano Ronaldo will not face disciplinary action by FIFA over his yellow card against Israel, which was suggested to have been deliberate to provoke a one-match ban before the European World Cup playoffs.
“It was considered that there were not enough elements to open any disciplinary proceedings,” FIFA said in a statement Tuesday.
FIFA had the option to charge the Portuguese star using its disciplinary rule regarding any player who “violates the principles of fair play or whose behavior is unsporting in any other way.”
FIFA has no specific rules against players or coaches who seek to provoke yellow or red cards to orchestrate the timing of suspensions, though the Union of European Football Associations introduced a two-match ban for such offenses in 2011.
Ronaldo was given a yellow card for dissent in the 90th minute of a 1-1 tie against Israel last Friday.
The result left Russia as the probable group winner and Portugal heading for the playoffs next month.
Ronaldo was suspended for Tuesday’s qualifier at Luxembourg.