Mark Delgado's second yellow card in Galaxy-Inter Miami match rescinded

MLS has rescinded the second yellow card given to Galaxy midfielder Mark Delgado in Sunday’s 1-1 tie with Inter Miami, making him eligible to play in Saturday’s match in San Jose.

The Galaxy filed a formal challenge with the league’s independent review panel over the caution, issued by replacement referee Gabriele Ciampi. The panel, consisting of one representative from the U.S. Soccer Federation, one representative from the Canadian Soccer Assn., and one independent representative nominated by the Professional Referee Organization, watched video of the incident and upheld the challenge.

Each club is entitled to two unsuccessful appeals per season. Since the Galaxy’s appeal was successful, the club maintains its two unsuccessful appeals for the 2024 season.

Ciampi waved the first yellow at Delgado for time wasting when he kicked a ball out of bounds in the 46th minute. The second yellow came in the 87th minute with the Galaxy trying to protect a 1-0 lead. On that occasion, Ciampi carded Delgado for tripping Sergio Busquets although replays clearly showed Delgado never touched the Inter Miami player, who ran into a sliding Delgado and fell.

“Really, really soft,” Galaxy coach Greg Vanney said of the cautions. “You don’t want to give [Lionel] Messi any more space than is already out there.”

With the Galaxy down a man, Messi was able to take advantage of the extra space in the middle of the field to score the game-tying goal five minutes later. On Wednesday, Busquets told reporters Delgado never should have been sent off.

“Yes, there was contact. It was very mild. But it was the referee’s decision about the card,” he said. “Much more is needed for an expulsion, because perhaps it was not even a card.”

Asked whether that had an impact on the game-tying goal, Busquets said, “I’m sure it did because the goal was after the expulsion and playing with one less can always influence it. But it was a referee’s decision about which we can’t do much more.”

Ciampi was put in charge of Sunday’s game as a replacement for the regular MLS officials, who have been locked out. Normally a USL League One official, Ciampi, was working his second MLS game in as many days and struggled all night to get control of the match.

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