Manuel Pellegrini: Uefa bans Man City boss for two matches

Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini has been given an immediate two-match touchline ban by Uefa for criticising the referee after his side's Champions League match against Barcelona.

Pellegrini said after the 2-0 home loss that Swedish official Jonas Eriksson was "not impartial to both teams".

He was charged with misconduct and will be in the stands for the second leg on 12 March, plus one more match.

A further one-game ban is suspended for two years, but Pellegrini can appeal.

Manuel Pellegrini

Playing career: 1973-86 - Universidad de Chile (451 appearances, 1 goal); 1973-86 - Chile national team (28 appearances, 1 goal)

Major teams managed: River Plate 2002-03, Villarreal 2004-09, Real Madrid 2009-10, Malaga 2010-13, Manchester City 2013-present

Managerial honours: Argentina Primera Division 2002-3, Intertoto Cup 2004

"The City manager will be banned for his team's round-of-16 second leg against Barcelona in Spain on 12 March," Uefa said in a statement.

"This means that Pellegrini may follow the game from the stands only; he may not enter the dressing room, tunnel or technical area before or during the match; and he may not communicate directly or indirectly with his players and/or technical staff during the game."

The first leg of the last-16 encounter at Etihad Stadium on 18 February was poised at 0-0 early in the second half when Eriksson sent off City defender Martin Demichelis for a foul on Lionel Messi when the Argentina playmaker was clean through on goal.

Replays suggested the incident was just outside the box, but a penalty was awarded and Messi duly converted. In the final minute Barca added a second through Dani Alves to take a two-goal advantage into the second leg at the Nou Camp.

In his post-match news conference, Pellegrini, 60, said: "From the beginning I felt the referee was not impartial to both teams.

"I think it was not a good idea to put a referee from Sweden in charge of such an important match, especially a referee who has made an important mistake against Barcelona in a previous match.

"[It's] more important football in Europe than Sweden. A big game with two important teams, that kind of game needs a referee with more experience."

Pellegrini later apologised for the comments.