Newcastle United striker Papiss Cisse has been banned for seven games by the FA after admitting to spitting at Manchester United's Jonny Evans during the two sides' Premier League clash on Wednesday.
Both Cisse and Evans were charged by the FA after television replays showed the duo spitting at each other during the game. While Evans was seen spitting at Cisse when he was lying on the ground, the Senegal forward also then appeared to do the same in the direction of the Northern Irishman.
Cisse, who accepted the charge, released a statement on Newcastle's official website apologising for his actions.
"I have apologies to make to a lot of people today. Firstly to my teammates and to our supporters, secondly to Jonny Evans, and thirdly to every football fan who saw the incident between myself and Jonny.
"I reacted to something I found very unpleasant. Sometimes it is hard not to react, particularly in the heat of the moment. I have always tried hard to be a positive role model, especially for our young fans, and yesterday I let you down."
"I hope children out there playing football for their clubs and schools this weekend will know better than to retaliate when they are angry. Perhaps when they see the problem it now causes me and my team they will be able to learn from my mistake, not copy it."
Having accepted that he was wrong, the Daily Mail claims that the Senegal striker has been fined a week's wages by his club and banned for seven games by the FA.
Although FA rules, which were changed last summer to bring them in accordance with FIFA guidelines, states that a player will be banned for six games if he is found guilty of spitting of an opponent, Cisse has been hit with an additional one match ban as he has already served a one-match suspension for Everton's Seamus Coleman earlier this season.
Meanwhile, Evans has decided to contest the charge, insisting that he is innocent.
"Having woken up this morning I am shocked to have seen the media coverage from last night's match. I would like to make it clear that I did not spit at Papiss Cisse," Evans said in a statement on Manchester United's official website.
"I was totally unaware of any spitting incident and had assumed that the issue at the time was with the challenge and his attempted retaliation to the tackle from the floor."
"During the game Papiss Cisse and I spoke about the incident and it is clear by my reaction in the television footage that I was totally surprised by any suggestion of spitting."
"It is not in my character or in my nature to spit at anybody nor is it something I have ever done or would ever do. It is certainly not something that I did last night."
The Manchester United player also faces a six-match suspension if he is found guilty of the charge.