The number of red cards given at UEFA EURO 2004™ was slightly down in comparison to the final tournament in 2000 – but the number of yellow cards increased.
UEFA's disciplinary statistics show that there were six dismissals during the competition in Portugal, compared with eight in Belgium and the Netherlands four years ago. Five of the sendings-off were for second bookable offences, while the other was for denying an obvious goalscoring opportunity. Switzerland and Russia each picked up two red cards.
148 yellow cards
Meanwhile, 148 yellow cards were displayed at EURO 2004™. This compares with 117 cautions in the 2000 final round, and gives an average of 4.77 cards per match (2000: 3.77). European champions Greece received 18 yellow cards - three per game on their way to the title - while Bulgaria and Russia were the teams with most yellow cards per match (13 cards each, 4.33 cards per game).
The matches with the most cards were Spain-Russia, Switzerland-Croatia and Bulgaria-Denmark (7 yellow cards and 1 red) and Russia-Greece (8 yellow cards).
Of the suspensions handed out to players, Italy striker Francesco Totti received a three-match ban for spitting at an opponent in the group game against Denmark, while a decision in the case against Switzerland forward Alexander Frei for spitting at an English opponent will be taken on 14 July.
Van Nistelrooij ban
Dutch striker Ruud van Nistelrooij was awarded a two-match ban for insulting referee Anders Frisk after the semi-final against Portugal. The Royal Netherlands Football Association (KNVB) announced yesterday that it had withdrawn its appeal in the matter.
In one of two doping-related decisions at the tournament, Croatia's Ivica Olic escaped punishment after testing positive for the banned substance, Methylprednisolone, after the group game against France. However, UEFA's control and disciplinary body ruled that the player did not commit any fault, and instead fined the Croatian Football Federation (HNS) €6,600 for failing to follow the correct procedures set by the anti-doping authorities.
Olic suffered a rib injury in a pre-EURO friendly against Denmark, and two days later was given a pain blocker which included Methylprednisolone. However, the UEFA control and disciplinary body reported that the HNS's anti-doping doctor and the doctor treating Olic failed to complete and submit the necessary Therapeutic Use Exemption form to UEFA.
In the other doping-related case, Netherlands midfielder Edgar Davids and team doctor Gerd Jan Gooudswaard were each fined €988 for disturbing a doping control after their side's quarter-final against Sweden. The KNVB was also docked €1320 for the improper conduct of a player and official during a doping control.
"On the occasion of the doping control conducted after the match, the Dutch team doctor and the player Edgar Davids disturbed the smooth running of the control by requesting repeatedly that a third sample should be taken for their private use, which is not in line with the current UEFA doping regulations," UEFA said.
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