Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa has beenbanned for eight games after being found guilty of abusing a referee.
The former Chelsea player, 30, was sent off byofficial Jesus Gil Manzano during Atletico’s 2-0 loss to Barcelona in La Liga.
Manzano said in his match report that theSpanish international had “insulted his mother”, a claim Costadenied.
The Spanish Football Federation’s ban ruleshim out of Atletico’s remaining La Liga fixtures this season.
Costa, who can appeal against the ban,received a four game suspension for insults to the referee and a further fourfor grabbing the official’s arm.
“I asked the referee and he told me Costasaid something to him,” Atletico manager Diego Simeone said after thegame.
“Other players have said things and notbeen sent off but that does not justify what Costa did.”
Atletico are currently 11 points behind leagueleaders Barcelona in second place, with seven games remaining.