All was well with Lyon on Sunday, as the side carried a comfortable 3-1 lead over Angers SCO, when center back Marcelo was called for a foul just outside his own box in the 50th minute. That's a dangerous place for a free kick, for sure, and Marcelo was yellow-carded. But still, Lyon was in control of the game.
As the referee held up the actual card, Marcelo put his hands up in protest, which any fan who has seen any sports game is common; players flagged for violations tend not to agree with the referees. Still, nothing to see here.
It got weird when Marcelo turned around and simultaneously flipped his left hand upwardly. In an extremely unfortunate and ultimately fateful stroke of terrible luck, Marcelo made contact with the referee as he was bringing the card down.
The referee has to realize that was accidental, right? Wrong! The guy takes a second to process what happened then immediately reaches into his back pocket for the red!
That's a terrible call. Marcelo did not mean to make contact with the referee, and the only reason he did so is because the ref happened to bring his card down at the same exact second that Marcelo flipped his hand up.
It got worse for Lyon—Angers scored twice after the red and the game finished 3-3.
This red card will likely be appealed and should be revoked, meaning Marcelo should be able to play in Lyon's next Ligue 1 game, which is on Oct. 13 against Monaco. But Lyon likely gets the victory if this activist ref didn't levy out this ridiculous red card.
Lyon fans: you have reason to be upset. Very, very upset.