Red and yellow cards were invented in 1966 by Ken Aston who was responsible for overseeing the referees at that year’s World Cup. With the variety of languages spoken in the World Cup, Aston saw several instances where it was not always clear to both players and spectators what decision the referee was making during the game. It was then he came up with the colour coded card system that we know today. His system was first used in the 1970 World Cup and is now used throughout football and in many other sports.

In football a yellow card is a caution. It is issued to a player who has committed misconduct or some other serious offence. A red card in football means two things when shown to a player. Firstly, they have committed a serious foul or have committed serious misconduct in another way. Secondly, they will have to leave the field of play immediately. In football, two yellow cards equal a red card. Thus if a player commits two fouls that are worthy of being a yellow card for each one, then a red will automatically be issued and the player will have to leave the field of play.

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