Ronaldo, Messi and Other Players Who Refused Substitution After Boulaye Dia for Salernitana

Ronaldo, Messi and Other Players Who Refused Substitution After Boulaye Dia for Salernitana

Elijah Odetokun
updated at March 4, 2024 at 9:42 AM
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  • Boulaye Dia refused to be substituted in for Salernitana against Udinese
  • The Senegalese forward is emotional over his failed move last summer
  • Big names like Cristiano Ronaldo have refused substitution in the past

Senegalese forward Boulaye Dia sparked controversy at the weekend after refusing to be substituted in with about eight minutes remaining in Salernitana's draw against Udinese.

Dia's relationship with the club and manager was strained after the club refused him a move to Premier League club Wolverhampton Wanderers in the summer.

Boulaye Dia, Salernitana, AC Monza, Italian Serie A.
Boulaye Dia's last game for Salernitana came against AC Monza last month. Photo by Francesco Pecoraro.
Source: Getty Images

Sports Brief looks at players who have refused substitution, both in and out, in the past.

Players who refused to come in

1. Cristiano Ronaldo

Ronaldo had many questionable behaviours before he left Manchester United in November 2022 – one of those was refusing to come off the bench in the 2-0 win a month before. Per Metro UK, the Portuguese claimed Erik ten Hag provoked him by asking him to come in for the last three minutes.

2. Carlos Tevez

Roberto Mancini claimed Argentine forward Carlos Tevez refused to come off the bench against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League. He was banished for five months but returned to help Manchester City with their first Premier League title.

3. Nikola Kalinic

Croatia nearly had a fairytale triumph at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, but Nikola Kalinic was not a part of it. He refused to be substituted into the game against Nigeria, claiming he had a back injury. He was sent home by Zlatko Dalic and has not returned to the national team since then.

Players who refused to come off

1. Lionel Messi

The eight-time Ballon d'Or winner refused to be removed from the action during Quique Setien's reign as Barcelona manager in a draw against Eibar. The manager claimed he wanted to give him a deserved rest, but it was a misunderstanding.

2. Kepa Arrizabalaga

The Chelsea goalkeeper refused to come off in the final minutes of the 2019 Carabao Cup final. Maurizio Sarri wanted him off because he had been clutching his thigh, but he claimed he was good to continue despite Willy Caballero being ready to come on. He saved one spot-kick in the shootout, but it was not enough, and Manchester City won. He was dropped for one game and fined a week's wages.

3. Lukasz Fabianksi

The Polish goalkeeper was injured for Swansea against Tottenham in 2017 but refused substitution despite his number going up. Per Wales Online, he conceded three times in the final seven minutes to turn a 1-0 lead into a 3-1 loss.

Why ten Hag wasn't playing Ronaldo

Sports Brief previously reported on why ten Hag wasn't playing Ronaldo before the former Real Madrid's outburst, which led to his departure from Old Trafford.

The Dutch manager claimed the player's lack of pre-season was a key factor, even though it was later confirmed that he had a sick child after losing one of his twins.

Elijah Odetokun photo
Elijah Odetokun
Elijah Odetokun is Reuters-trained journalist with three years of experience having previously worked at Daily Times Nigeria, OmaSports and El Futbolero.