Real Madrid midfielder Federico Valverde could earn a suspension as high as 12 games. The potential ban comes from a punch he threw at Villarreal’s Alex Baena after Baena and the Yellow Submarine won at the Santiago Bernabeu. At points throughout the game, Valverde was visibly frustrated with the physical altercations from the Villarreal player.

Yet, as a result of the violent conduct and the fact that it came after the game, the Uruguayan could miss a massive chunk of time. Fortunately for Real Madrid fans, the ban may not kick in for a month.

According to The Athletic, which identified the potential suspension duration, the Consejo Superior Deportes’s (CSD) antiviolence commission will review the incident. The CSD may not reach a conclusion until the heart of May. Consequently, Valverde could be available for the Copa del Rey Final on May 6.

Breaking down a potential Valverde suspension

According to The Athletic, there are three potential outcomes. On one hand, the CSD could hand out a punishment itself. This is where the longest possible suspension for Valverde comes from. This can lead to a ban from all sports venues for between one and six months. Hence, there is a possible 12-game suspension.

The CSD could, however, hand the issue to the Spanish FA, citing extraordinary circumstances. In this instance, the suspension could be between two to four matches. This is the case where a delay in suspension could happen. The Spanish FA would need time to deliberate on its own. As a result, Valverde would likely be available for the Copa del Rey Final in early May.

Finally, the midfielder may not receive a ban at all. In fact, the Spanish FA told The Athletic that it does not believe Valverde will pick up a suspension.

Criminal charges still possible for midfielder

Alex Baena decided to press criminal charges against Valverde. The club confirmed the news not long after news of the punch broke. Baena denied accusations that he commented on Valverde’s family, a report that surfaced after the game in relation to a miscarriage scare from Valverde’s partner, Mina Bonino.