Banned from tourney: Neymar Banned
Published: June 21, 2015
Banned from tourney: Neymar Banned, Lionel Messi has said he is ‘sorry’ to see his Barcelona team-mate and close friend Neymar banned for the rest of the Copa America.
Neymar was handed a four-match suspension after headbutting Jeison Murillo following the final whistle of Brazil’s 1-0 defeat by Colombia.
Argentina could benefit from Neymar’s ban in their quest to win the Copa America for a joint record 15th time, however Messi would rather see his club team-mate in action at the prestigious competition.
Messi, speaking to reporters, said: ‘I’m sorry he’s no longer in this Copa America.
‘Neymar is a friend and I care about him. I’m sorry about the suspension he was given because I believe he is a very important player for Brazil.’
Messi helped Argentina claim top spot in Group B by playing the full 90 minutes of his side’s 1-0 win over tournament guests Jamaica.
Brazil, on the other hand, will have to make do without Neymar for their final Group C match against Venezuela on Sunday and any further Copa America games should they qualify for the knockout stages.
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