FC Barcelona

Tata Martino Ejected at Halftime of Real Sociedad vs. Barcelona

SEVILLE, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 09:  Head coach Gerardo Tata Martino of FC Barcelona gives instructions during the La Liga match between Sevilla FC and FC Barcelona at Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan on February 9, 2014 in Seville, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images
Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistFebruary 22, 2014

When you get used to having things go your way, it often leads to more anger when things go wrong. That seemed to be what happened to Tata Martino in Barcelona's La Liga match against Real Sociedad.

After the manager watched his club go into halftime with the score tied at 1-1, Martino took out his anger on the referee and was consequently ejected from the match, according to the club's official Twitter account:  

BeIN sports provides some more details on the incident:

AS elaborated on what Martino said to get himself removed:

The first half featured a lot of sloppy play, including an own goal by Alex Song as well as yellow cards by both Sergio Busquets and Marc Barta. Lionel Messi earned the equaliser, but the road team was expecting a bigger lead over their opponent.

However, things got much worse after intermission as Real Sociedad scored twice in a span of five minutes to take a 3-1 lead over Barcelona. The home squad was able to hold on for an impressive win that will cause massive changes on top of the league table.

SAN SEBASTIAN, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 22:  Lionel Messi (L) and Neymar of FC Barcelona react after Antoine Griezmann of Real Sociedad scored his team's second goal goal during the La Liga match between Real Sociedad and FC Barcelona at Estadio Anoeta on Februar
David Ramos/Getty Images

Barca entered the week tied with Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid for first place in the league, but they had the overwhelming advantage in goal differential. However, the loss to Real Sociedad will drop them to at least second place with Real Madrid earning a win over Elche earlier in the day.

Atletico Madrid have a road match against Osasuna on Sunday and can pull ahead of Barcelona with a win or draw.

While Saturday's poor performance cannot be entirely blamed on Martino, things certainly went south when he was forced to leave the sidelines. This is even more disappointing with a starting lineup missing many starters after he recently explained that Barcelona "have to aspire to winning every game we have left,"according to FCBarcelona.com.

However, ESPN's Dermot Corrigan notes that good things can still come from this:

Either way, Martino will have a lot of questions to answer after losing his cool at halftime.


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