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Despite their long history in soccer, these three former players and two still active have never left the field for an expulsion
To receive an expulsion in soccer does not seem so complicated, either by a direct red, two yellow cards in the same match or simply the accumulation of up to three yellow cards during a certain stage of a competition would mean suspension, even if the card is not seen directly red Another factor that can encourage an expulsion is the position in the field of play, since defenses are more prone to cards. However, there are players who knew how to behave and maintain discipline, managing to lead a long career without any expulsion.
The German right-back holds the recognition of never having received a red card, according to UEFA. Already retired in March 2017, Lahm played 652 matches at the club level and 113 with the German national team, according to Transfermarkt. With all that experience, the 65,716 minutes he played were not enough to add a red card, even if he accumulated 60 yellow cards in his career. According to data from the Bayern Munich website, the defender had an average of one foul for every 168 minutes in his 516 games with this club.
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It can be said that Platini had a cleaner step as a player than as UEFA president, dismissed in 2015 for a corruption scandal. As a soccer player, according to Transfermarkt, the midfielder retired in 1988 with 310 matches, adding 27,126 minutes of play in which he only received 4 yellow cards. In a statement collected by the UEFA website, the former French player said that "Football was more violent before, now referees are better at protecting players with yellow and red cards."
The current player of Vissel Kobe, a Japanese club, also stands out for never having been sent off with a red card. The Spanish midfielder has a career of 828 games between his time at FC Barcelona, the Spanish national team and his current team. During this trip, Iniesta received 66 yellow cards according to Transfermarkt, because the Spaniard has always stood out for his discipline in the field and his distance from controversies.
Real Madrid's mythical 7 also enters the list of those who were never expelled, and that incredibly reached the number of 1019 games in which he added 82,656 minutes. During that trajectory the Spaniard saw in 49 occasions the yellow card, but never the red one, according to Transfermarkt. In an interview conducted by Vanity Fair with Raúl, he explained that "I have discussed with referees and teammates, but always knowing where the limit was. I have tried to convey the values of fair play. Do not do this, do not kick, they will be expelled and your team will be harmed."
The Portuguese midfielder is still continuing his career at Wolverhampton in England. At the moment, he has disputed 621 parties at the level of clubs and 113 with the absolute selection of Portugal. Among those games he has received 88 yellow cards, but without reaching expulsion.
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An important player who could achieve this feat is Lionel Messi, but the Argentinian lost his chances at the beginning of his career, with a red card received with Barcelona B when he was only 17 years old. More unusual was his only expulsion with Argentina, when he debuted in 2005 with the national team and would only last 47 seconds after nudging the player from Hungary. Since that time, Messi has not seen the red card again, according to the newspaper As.
LatinAmerican Post | Juan Bacallado
Translated from "Caballeros del fútbol: jugadores que jamás recibieron una tarjeta roja"