Douglas Costa banned for four Serie A matches over spitting incident

Douglas Costa
Brazil and Juventus star Douglas Costa (Getty Images)

Juventus’ Douglas Costa has been banned for four matches after spitting at Sassuolo’s Federico Di Francesco during the teams’ weekend match, Lega Serie A announced.

Costa clashed with the Sassuolo attacker at the end of Sunday’s Serie A match, which Juve won, 2-1, thanks to a brace from Cristiano Ronaldo, his first goals for the club.

The Brazil international elbowed and headbutted Di Francesco then spat in his face, with referee Daniele Chiffi producing a red card after a VAR review of the incident.

Costa apologized on social media without mentioning Di Francesco, while Juve head coach Massimiliano Allegri claimed his player had been provoked.

 
 
 

 
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Gostaria de pedir desculpas a todos os torcedores da Juventus por essa minha reação equivocada no jogo de hoje. Peço também desculpas aos meus companheiros de time, que estão sempre comigo nos momentos bons e ruins. Errei feio, tenho consciência e venho me desculpar com todos por isso. Deixo claro que essa atitude isolada não condiz com o que sempre mostrei em minha carreira. Douglas Costa Vorrei scusarmi con tutti i fan della Juventus per questa reazione fuorviante nel gioco di oggi. Mi scuso anche con i miei compagni di squadra, che sono sempre con me nei momenti belli e cattivi. Ero brutto, ne sono consapevole e mi scuso con tutti per questo. Metto in chiaro che questo atteggiamento isolato non corrisponde a quello che ho sempre dimostrato nella mia carriera. Douglas Costa @juventus

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Lega Serie A confirmed in a disciplinary update Tuesday that Costa will serve a four-match ban, with the punishment relating only to the spitting incident.

Di Francesco, 21, son of Roma head coach Eusebio Di Francesco, has issued an angry denial after reports suggested he had racially taunted Costa.

“I am profoundly upset by the allegations and the inventions which have appeared on various national media outlets,” Di Francesco said. “All of this is offensive and denigratory.

“I will not allow racist behavior and/or phrases that do not pertain to my values and ethics, and that are fruits of the imagination of others, to be attributed to me. I ask for and demand respect.”

Allegri said after the game that Costa would be fined by Juve following the incident.