Cristiano Ronaldo’s appeal against a three-match ban for pushing Athletic Bilbao’s Carlos Gurpegui has been rejected.
Ronaldo will now miss La Liga fixtures against Villarreal, Getafe and Elche as Real Madrid press for just their second title since 2008.
However, he remains available for Real’s Copa del Rey second-leg tie with Atletico Madrid – in which they hold a 3-0 advantage – and will return to league action for the Madrid derby on March 3.
The Portugal star was sent off in the 75th minute of his side’s 1-1 draw at Bilbao on Sunday after he raised a hand to opposition captain Gurpegi.
Ronaldo – who won the 2013 FIFA Ballon d’Or – also clashed with Ander Iturraspe and gestured toward the fourth official as he left the pitch.
His three-match ban comprised of one game for his actions and two for dissent as he walked off the pitch.
Real have been fined a total of €1,050, while Ronaldo has been hit in the pocket to the tune of €1,200.
Ronaldo has scored 22 goals in 21 La Liga appearances this season.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side are third in the table, three points behind table-topping Atleti.