ROME (AP) — Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini has been banned for three Serie A matches for elbowing an opposing player, putting his status for Italy's World Cup squad at risk.
The Serie A judge issued the verdict Monday using TV replays to examine Chiellini's contact with Roma midfielder Miralem Pjanic in Juve's 1-0 win Sunday.
Italy coach Cesare Prandelli has a strict code of ethics that usually prevents players banned with their clubs from being called up to the national team.
Prandelli is due to announce his 30-man preliminary squad for the World Cup on Tuesday, with the final 23-man squad due June 2.
Chiellini is a key member of Italy's defense and has made 67 appearances and scored four goals.