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COPA LIBERTADORES

Real Madrid legend Marcelo accidentally breaks opposition player’s leg in Copa Libertadores tie

Los Blancos’ most decorated player was sent off after seriously injuring Argentinos Juniors defender Luciano Sánchez while playing for Fluminense.

Update:
Los Blancos’ most decorated player was sent off after seriously injuring Argentinos Juniors defender Luciano Sánchez while playing for Fluminense.
Luciano González / EFE

During his time with Real Madrid, Marcelo won it all. Six LaLiga title and five Champions Leagues were among 25 trophies he won during his spell in Spain between 2007 and 2022, which make him the most decorated player in Los Blancos’ history. On Tuesday night, however, he went through one of the lowest moments of his career, albeit not nearly as low as Luciano Sánchez, whose leg he broke in a Copa Libertadores game between Argentinos Juniors and Fluminense at Estadio Diego Armando Maradona in Buenos Aires.

Marcelo sent off amidst horrific scenes

With Marcelo’s Fluminense a goal down just before the hour mark, the left-back picked up possession out on the left and rolled his foot over the ball as he tried to cut inside Sánchez and run infield. However, the former Madrid man’s extended his leg, seemingly trying to protect the ball, but ended up stamping on his opponent’s outstretched leg on the ground as Sánchez attempted to make a tackle. What followed was not pretty in the slightest and is perhaps one of the most sickening injuries we have seen. For that very reason, we are not going to post a clip of it.

“Today, I went through one of my toughest moments on the field. I unintentionally injured a fellow player. Luciano Sánchez, I want to wish you the best possible recovery. Stay strong!”, Marcelo posted on social media after the match.

Sánchez suffers dislocated knee in Copa Libertadores draw

The incident certainly appeared to be unfortunate rather than malicious, with no suggestion that Marcelo had deliberately tried to injured Sánchez, who Argentinos Juniors revealed post match had suffered a dislocated left knee.

However unlucky it may have been, the Brazilian was shown one of the most deserved red cards in recent memory, although Fluminense fought back from a goal down to level the match without him in the closing stages. The 35-year-old started his career with the Rio-based club before moving to Madrid and rejoined them in February this year after a short spell with Olmpiacos in Greece.

Argentinos Juniors are managed by former Barcelona centre-back Gabriel Milito and right-back Sánchez signed for them in 2022 having spent his entire career up until that point with Independiente Rivadavia in the Argentine second tier.

Tuesday’s match was a Copa Libertadores round of 16 first-leg fixture, with the return due to be played at the Maracanã on Tuesday 1 August.