Espanyol have hit back at the decision to allow Robert Lewandowski to play for Barcelona in tomorrow’s Catalan derby at the Camp Nou.
Lewandowski had been set to sit the game out after being hit with a three-match ban for his red card against Osasuna.
However, in a curious turn of events, Barcelona confirmed the ban has been temporarily suspended, meaning Lewandowski is free to play.
The news did not go down well on the other side of the city.
“Espanyol find it unusual that, 24 hours before the game against Barcelona, and after seeing appeals turned down by three different bodies, Robert Lewandowski’s ban has been temporarily suspended,” read a club statement.
“We believe the requirements to justify the temporary suspension are not met, especially as the sanction covers two different offences [the red card and the gesture]. It has also previously been upheld by three different bodies, while the referee’s report strongly endorses the ban.
“The ruling talks about irreparable damage to Barcelona without going into assessing the irreparable damage to their rivals and to the competition, without giving any possibility of appeal [to other clubs].
“Espanyol consider that this last-minute decision totally conditions this gameweek in LaLiga, which began on Thursday, and the team’s preparation for this match. Espanyol feel it is wrong and also an injustice when taking into account the precedents with other clubs.”
Source | Espanyol
Lewandowski was also set to miss Barca’s upcoming games against Atletico and Getafe, and the club still don’t know whether he will be available or not for those fixtures.