Argentina captain Lionel Messi has been banned from international football for three months after making corruption claims against Conmebol, the South American Football Confederation.

The 32-year-old criticised the refereeing at the Copa America tournament last month after getting a red card in the 3rd/4th place play-off. He claimed the competition was fixed in favour of the hosts Brazil.

In response, Conmebol said the accusations were “unfounded” and “represent a lack of respect”.

Messi was also hit by a $50 000 fine and has seven days to appeal Conmebol’s decision.

If the ban is upheld, the Barcelona star will miss Argentina’s upcoming friendlies against Chile, Mexico and Germany in September and October.

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