Home / Sports / Football News /  FIFA World Cup 2022: Lionel Messi might miss crucial semifinal against Croatia. Here's why

Argentina could be in a major crisis if Lionel Messi faces a ban to miss crucial semifinal match against Croatia. FIFA has opened disciplinary proceedings on the Argentina captain for lashing out at the match referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz. FIFA will declare its verdict later today. 

During the high-voltage Netherlands vs Argentina quarterfinals last week, discipline was a major issue as players and coaching staff from both sides were seen losing their composure. Apart from verbal spats, the players from both sides often confronted each other as brawls broke out during and after the game. So much so that Antonio Mateu Lahoz was seen flashing the yellow card as many as 16 times. 

Following the match, FIFA decided to open disciplinary actions against the Argentine Football Association and the respective players for the on-field confrontations and for breaching its code of conduct in the Netherlands vs Argentina match.

"The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has opened proceedings against the Argentinian Football Association due to potential breaches of articles 12 (Misconduct of players and officials) and 16 (Order and security at matches) of the FIFA Disciplinary Code during the Netherlands vs Argentina FIFA World Cup match," read statement by FIFA.

If found guilty, Leo Messi can miss the semifinals against Croatia.

Meanwhile, Lionel Messi criticised the referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz saying that he should not have officiated the World Cup quarter-finals at Lusail Stadium. "We didn't have a great game, and then the referee sent it to extra time. He was always against us. In the last play, it was not a foul," the Argentina captain said adding, "FIFA has to review that, it can't give a referee like that a match of this importance, when they're not up to the task."

Argentina's coach defends his player

Defending his players, Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni defended insisted on Monday that the game was played in the "right way".

"The game the other day was played in the right way by both teams. That is football," said the 44-year-old, who led Argentina to victory at last year's Copa America.

"There are times when you have to attack and times when you have to defend, times too when there might be arguments.

Argentina face Croatia in the first semi-final on Tuesday, before 2018 champions France take on giant-killing Morocco on the following day.



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