MADRID, SPAIN – NOVEMBER 21: Rafael Benitez of Real Madrid CF checks the time prior to start the La Liga match between Real Madrid CF and FC Barcelona at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on November 21, 2015 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)

Real Madrid face possible expulsion from Copa del Rey for playing ineligible player

For Real Madrid fans, they couldn’t possibly think of anything worse than losing to Barcelona 4-0 at home a couple weeks ago. That was, until today when they discovered something much, much worse. As Real Madrid faced Spanish third division team Cadiz CF in the Copa del Rey quarterfinals, everyone expected Real Madrid to run away with a win. While Real Madrid won 3-1, they may still lose because of a rather stupid mistake by manager Rafa Benitez.

Benitez and Real Madrid face expulsion from the Copa del Rey for playing an ineligible player. Denis Cheryshev had received three yellow cards last season when he was on loan for Villarreal and under Spanish FA rules, was given a one game suspension. Cheryshev never served that suspension and was supposed to serve that suspension today. Trouble was that he started against Cadiz today and even scored against them to go up 1-0 in the third minute. As the news trickled in during the game, Cadiz fans were singing “Benítez mira el Twitter (Benitez look on Twitter).”

And if that wasn’t bad enough, Cheryshev may not have been the only ineligible player on Real Madrid’s roster today.

While nothing has been reported that Real would be expelled or Benitez getting sacked, the calls for Rafa to be sacked will hit a fever pitch. Most Real Madrid fans didn’t like it when Benitez was hired, they didn’t like it when they lost 4-0 to Barcelona and they will absolutely hate it if they have to see their team forfeit to a third division team. I know Real Madrid president Florentino Perez gave his support to Benitez after the Barcelona defeat, that support is really going to be tested now if the unthinkable should happen and Real Madrid is eliminated.

Real Madrid fans and rivals have been reacting since the news broke. This tweet from Barcelona’s Gerard Pique says it all.

About Phillip Bupp

Producer/editor of the Awful Announcing Podcast and Short and to the Point. News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. Highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @phillipbupp