Zenit's Leandro Paredes Accused Of Getting Deliberately Sent Off So He Can Attend Copa Libertadores Final
Zenit St Petersburg midfielder Leandro Paredes has responded after being accused of deliberately getting sent off so he can attend this weekend's Copa Libertadores final.
The former Roma man was dismissed by the referee seven minutes from time in the 1-0 win over Akhmat Grozny at the weekend and will now miss the league game against CSKA Moscow on Sunday.
And people think something is very fishing considering the former Boca Juniors man will be making the trip back to Argentina to see his side take on arch-rivals River Plate in the SuperClasico this Saturday.
Apparently in Russia, Leandro Paredes of Zenit is being accused of purposely getting himself red carded in order to fly to Argentina and attend the first leg of the Copa Libertadores final between Boca Juniors and River Plate at La Bombonera. pic.twitter.com/VAQDRfBcfa- Roy Nemer (@RoyNemer) November 6, 2018
Aficionados del Zenit, piensan que Leandro Paredes se hizo expulsar intencionalmente, para poder viajar a Argentina y presenciar la Final de la Copa Libertadores Boca vs River ¿Ustedes que piensan? :no_mouth:pic.twitter.com/6nNmmPu9rU- Alan Lara (@alanlarav) November 7, 2018
Paredes came through the ranks at Boca and went on to make 28 appearances for the club before joining Chievo in 2014.
We support Zenit Saint Petersburg centre-mid Leandro Paredes now. https://t.co/CGCd1EXVb2- MUNDIAL (@MundialMag) November 6, 2018
Clearly, he still has an affection for the team and will be watching the big game between two Buenos Aires in what basically the South American equivalent of the Champions League final, once he's played against Bordeaux in the Europa League this Thursday.
Paredes himself has commented on the matter, saying it's all coincidental.
"I was going to arrive on Sunday in Argentina, but as we played on Thursday for the Europa League in France, they proposed that I not return to Russia and travel directly from there on Friday," he told Fox Sports Argentina.
"It's all a lie. Nothing happened here. It's something that was invented in Argentina. I didn't earn red card on purpose, I would never do something like that.
"When I heard that this was being talked about, I talked with Zenit sporting director and he told me that they trust me."
It is the biggest game in Argentina so you can't blame him too much, if we're being totally honest.
Something of this kind has happened before though, with Kevin Nolan genuinely getting Christmas fixtures off for five years on the trot thanks to some perfect timing with his fifth booking.