Paris Saint-Germain superstar Neymar was one of five players sent off following a fracas during fierce rivals Marseille’s derby victory.
The clash saw an incredible 12 yellow cards shown by referee Jerome Brisard inside normal time as tensions flared on the pitch – and the shocking melee that was sparked into life deep inside stoppage time saw both teams punished with dismissals.
Marseille’s Dario Benedetto and PSG midfielder Leandro Paredes had clashed following a challenge with the visitors leading by a single goal, and their coming together soon developed into a full-scale scrap involving a large number of stars.
Neymar also found himself involved, and soon received his marching orders for a punch on the back of the head of defender Alvaro Gonzalez after the official checked his VAR screen to review the unsavoury incident.
As he trudged off the Parc des Princes pitch, Neymar could be seen telling the fourth official about an alleged incident of racist abuse, seemingly involving Gonzalez, to add another sickening twist to the evening.
Television footage and a pitchside microphone appear to have caught Neymar pointing at the centre back in question and shouting: ‘Racism, no?’
The 28-year-old doubled down on his allegation on social media shortly after the game, claiming that Gonzalez had labelled him a ‘monkey motherf*****’.
He wrote: ‘VAR catching my “aggression” is easy… now I want to see the image of the racist calling me a monkey motherf*****’.
Before uncovering what Gonzalez had allegedly called him on the field, Neymar also tweeted: ‘My only regret is not hitting that a****** in the face.’
Andre Villas-Boas, the Marseille boss, said he hoped that racism had not further marred the clash. He told Telefoot: ‘I do not know, I hope not, I hope that nothing has happened’.
Gonzalez took to his own social media in the aftermath as he baited Neymar and Co, writing: ‘Sometimes you need to learn how to lose’.
The defender tweeted: ‘There is no place for racism. A clean career and with many team-mates and friends on a day to day basis. Sometimes you have to learn how to lose and accept it on the field. Incredible three points today, Allez l’OM thank you family.’
Angel Di Maria, also returning for PSG, was then sensationally accused of spitting on Gonzalez by Villas-Boas.
The attempts to restore calm from the man in the middle fell on deaf ears. Layvin Kurzawa and Jordan Amavi were also caught striking out at each other with punches, with Brisard showing the pair straight red cards too.
Paredes and Benedetto were the next players banished back inside after picking up their second bookings.
PSG’s run to the final of last season’s elongated Champions League saw them allowed two extra weeks to prepare for the new Ligue 1 term.
Thomas Tuchel will have been left speechless after his team’s horror start, however.
A depleted side, ravaged by positive Covid-19 tests, fell to a slender defeat against Lens on Thursday, and Marseille were able to inflict further misery despite Neymar featuring in this one.
The hosts were forced to play out the dying stages of the tempestuous encounter with eight men, with Marseille reduced to nine.
Thauvin’s goal on 31 minutes proved enough to ensure PSG remain in the drop zone.
Watch the full video of the incident below:
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Did you see the FIVE RED CARDS handed out in the PSG-Marseille game this morning? Even Neymar got the chop! pic.twitter.com/co5rVNuldN
— FlashScore.com.au (@FlashScoreAU) September 14, 2020