Sergio Ramos, Roy Keane & footballers with a rotten red card record

Comments()
Getty/Goal composite
From midfield enforcers and teak tough defenders to elegant skill players - Goal takes a look at players who have received a litany of red cards

  1. Getty Images

    #1 Joey Barton

    Before he became Joey Barton the philosopher, he was Joey Barton the punisher.

    The former Manchester City and Newcastle United midfielder was sent off six times in the Premier League, with a total of nine dismissals against his name across the duration of his career, including one in Ligue 1, where he clashed with Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva.

    As well as being ill-disciplined on the pitch, Barton also exhibited violent behaviour off it, particularly when he was younger, but later in his career he took his battles to the realm of the mind.

  2. Getty Images

    #2 Gerardo Bedoya

    Former Colombia international Gerardo Bedoya holds the record for most red cards received by a footballer with 46 dismissals.

    The midfielder, who counts Racing, Millionarios and Boca Juniors among his former clubs, was prone to lashing out, hence his terrible rap sheet.

  3. Getty Images

    #3 Diego Costa

    Diego Costa is very much a throwback to an era when strikers needed to be just as aggressive as the defenders who were intent on stopping them.

    However, his style of play has landed him in trouble with referees everywhere he has been.

    The Spain international is certainly a force to be reckoned with in the opposition box, but his propensity towards violence means that he is into double figures when it comes to career red cards.

  4. Getty Images

    #4 Edgar Davids

    The fact that Edgar Davids has the nickname 'Pitbull' speaks volumes about his style of play, but unfortunately that intensity sometimes landed him in trouble.

    While he was undoubtedly a skilful midfielder, Davids displayed plenty of aggression in his play. The former Juventus, Barcelona and Ajax star was sent off eight times in Italy and four times in the Champions League.

    Despite his small stature he was deceptively strong and he certainly packed a punch, as Stephen Wright found out in 2013.

  5. Getty Images

    #5 Richard Dunne

    Along with Patrick Vieira and Duncan Ferguson, Richard Dunne is the player who holds the record for most red cards in the Premier League.

    The former Republic of Ireland international may have been Manchester City's Player of the Year for four years in a row from 2005 to 2008, but he also paid the price for rashness.

  6. Getty Images

    #6 Duncan Ferguson

    An icon at Everton, Duncan Ferguson holds the distinction - along with Patrick Vieira and Richard Dunne - as being the record-holder for most red cards in the Premier League, having been sent off eight times.

    Aggression is trait more commonly associated with defenders or midfielders, but Ferguson was every bit as tough as those who marked him and he was fond of a tackle.

    The former Scotland international occasionally went too far though and was known to punch and head-butt his opponents as well.

  7. Getty Images

    #7 Vinnie Jones

    Nowadays Vinnie Jones is a Hollywood tough guy, more at home playing gangsters or fearsome mutants on the silver screen. However, his entire hardman image stems from his playing days.

    A towering presence on the pitch, the former Wimbledon and Chelsea midfielder took no mercy on his opponents and one of his trademarks was the high tackle, which more often than not left someone writhing in agony on a muddy pitch.

  8. Getty

    #8 Roy Keane

    During the 1990s and early 2000s, Manchester United boasted one of the most feared and respected midfielders in the world in Roy Keane.

    The Irishman was the beating heart of Sir Alex Ferguson's all-conquering side, but he was not without his flaws, chief of which was his furious temper.

    Keane never backed down from a challenge and he also possessed a dirty streak, which led to confrontations with the likes of Patrick Vieira, Alan Shearer and, most infamously of all, Alf Inge Haaland.

    The former Red Devils captain received his marching orders seven times in his Premier League career, which puts him right among the top all-time offenders.

  9. Getty Images

    #9 Paolo Montero

    Uruguay has a reputation for producing tremendously tough defenders and Paolo Montero is a standard-bearer.

    Montero holds the record for most red cards in the history of Serie A with 16 to his name and he amassed a total of 21 in all.

  10. Getty Images

    #10 Pepe

    Former Real Madrid centre-back Pepe is the type of player fans love to hate and part of that is his tendency to pick up cards.

    The Portugal international was sent off in the 2014 World Cup for butting heads with Germany's Thomas Muller and has found himself at the centre of a number of violent melees during his career.

    As well as being in double figures when it comes to red cards, Pepe has also been heavily criticised for his unsportsmanlike habits, which include feigning injury and diving.

  11. Getty Images

    #11 Sergio Ramos

    Sergio Ramos is widely regarded as being one of the best defenders in world football, but the Real Madrid stalwart's disciplinary record is appalling.

    The World Cup winner holds the record for most sending offs in La Liga history with 20 dismissals and he is also the player who has been cautioned most in the history of the Champions League.

    It is, perhaps, no surprise either given Ramos' aggressive style of play and as he heads into the final stages of his career, it doesn't look like he's going to change.

  12. Getty

    #12 Francesco Totti

    Francesco Totti was one of the most gifted players of his generation, but he also had a mean streak, which saw him pick up 11 red cards in Serie A during his Roma career.

    The former Italy international received his marching orders a total of 15 times while playing for the Giallorossi and was also controversially sent off at the 2002 World Cup.

  13. Getty Images

    #13 Mark van Bommel

    As if to ram home his reputation as a red card magnet, Mark van Bommel was sent off in the final game of his career after hitting an opponent with an overzealous tackle.

    The Netherlands international played for some of the best clubs in the world, such as Barcelona, Bayern Munich and AC Milan, but he is not remembered for his elegant style of play.

    Rather, the midfielder's snapping tackles and fearlessness are what marked him out. Unfortunately, he didn't always time them well.

  14. Getty Images

    #14 Patrick Vieira

    Former Arsenal and France star Patrick Vieira was an imposing figure on the football pitch, but sometimes his temper got the better of him.

    A combative, tough-tackling midfielder, Vieira's role as an enforcer involved plenty of risk. However, he frequently miscalculated and ended up on the wrong side of referees more often that he probably would have liked.

    The 1990s and early 2000s in the Premier League are defined by Vieira's running battles with Manchester United's Roy Keane, a foe he even notably clashed with off the pitch.

    With eight Premier League red cards during his career, Vieira is the division's joint record holder.

  15. Getty Images

    #15 Zinedine Zidane

    Zinedine Zidane is one of the greatest French footballers of all time, possessing prodigious levels of skill, but he had a huge weakness too: his fiery temperament.

    Even before his outrageous headbutt to Marco Materazzi in the 2006 World Cup final, Zidane had a reputation for losing his head during games, having previously been sent off in the 1998 World Cup for a stamp on Saudi Arabia's Fuad Anwar.

    He amassed 12 red cards across his club career too, which is not typical of a player known for his silken grace on the ball.