Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti has stated Lionel Messi can get away with things other players cannot, following the Italian's sending off in the Champions League against Real Madrid.
Verratti was given his marching orders for two yellow cards in the second leg of their last-16 defeat at the Parc des Princes, the last of which was for dissent.
PSG eventually lost the game 2-1, going down 5-2 on aggregate, getting knocked out of the Champions League despite being early favourites to win the competition.
And while admitting he was in the wrong for the red card, Verratti has suggested Messi gets special treatment.
"I got it wrong against Real, but it was a red card out of frustration and sometimes referees could be more tolerant," Verratti told La Gazzetta dello Sport.
"It was a bad reaction but I didn't insult anybody, whereas Messi goes around pointing his finger in the referee's face and doesn't even get punished. But anyway, I need to improve."
As Barcelona beat Chelsea in their last-16 second leg, courtesy of two Messi goals and one from Ousmane Dembele, the Argentine was shown on camera visibly remonstrating with the referee to punish opposing players for fouls on occasion.
PSG's domestic goalscoring prowess
Despite getting knocked out of the Champions League, PSG are well on their way to winning another Ligue 1 title, currently 17 points clear of second-place Monaco.
With 95 top-flight goals in 31 games so far, no team in Europe's top five leagues has scored more times than PSG this season.
Edinson Cavani is top-scorer in the league with 24 goals (1.01 per 90 minutes), while Neymar closely follows behind on 19 (1.00 per 90).
PSG have also been resolute at the back, conceding 21 goals and keeping 17 clean sheets.