The photograph in The Guardian shows a member of the Chelsea groundstaff with a clenched fist and having to restrained by one of his colleagues. It’s not clear whether Patrice Evra is also looking to engage in combat, although he’s being flanked by Park Ji Sung, with a number of stewards surrounding the altercation.
It appears as though the situation was quickly defused, although it’s certain that we haven’t heard the last of this episode. It appears that members of the Chelsea staff took umbrage with the Manchester United players warming down after their 2-1 defeat to the Blues on Saturday. Carlos Tevez claims that Evra was provoked after receiving some nasty verbals.
“Patrice received a grave insult from a member of Chelsea’s staff,” Carlos Tevez said last night. “He demanded an explanation and from that moment these men just wanted to attack Patrice. Obviously it’s normal that we tried to defend our team-mate but within a few seconds all of the United players were surrounded by stewards.
“I think that the security cameras will show the provocation we received. I have never seen anything like this in my career . . . if the FA opens an investigation, we will cooperate and happily give our version of what happened.”
Manchester United have requested a copy of the CCTV footage from Chelsea and this episode is sure to leave a nasty taste in the mouth, which has every chance of spilling over into next season. And who knows, perhaps the two teams will be meeting in next month’s Champions League final.