With Wayne Rooney being questioned by police for allegedly spitting at a photographer, Pies looks at six other footballers who thought it was better out than in
1. El-Hadji Diouf
Sunderland’s new signing is football’s undoubted King of Phlegm. While at Bolton the Senegalese striker was banned, fined and sent to counselling after spitting at Portsmouth’s Arjan de Zeeuw. He was also alleged to have spat at Middlesbrough fans. During his Liverpool days he picked up a fine in court after spitting at a Celtic fan.
2. Frank Rijkaard
Nicknamed The Llama by the German press after firing a volley of greenies into Rudi Voller’s perm at the 1990 World Cup. Still worth watching.
3. Eric Addo
The PSV Eindhoven centre-back was banned for four matches by Uefa after spitting at Fenerbahce’s Semih Senturk. The Ghanian argued that he was justified in offloading his bodily fluids onto the Turk because he had been elbowed by him moments earlier.
4. Patrick Viera
The then Arsenal man virtually took a running jump before launching a huge ball of spittle towards West Ham’s Neil Ruddock in 1999. The Frenchman was not best pleased after being sent-off. He later said: “Spitting at a fellow professional is something I sincerely regret. I apologise to everyone involved.” He may have been sorry, but not as sorry as when he received a six-match ban and a Â£45,000 fine.
5. Sinisa Mihajlovic
The controversial defender picked up an eight-game ban for spitting at Chelsea’s Adrian Mutu during a Champions League game for Lazio in 2003. Of course, shortly after this spitting at Mutu became something Uefa fully approved of…
6. Francesco Totti
The Italian star’s Euro 2004 tournament ended in controversy after being red-carded for spitting at Denmark’s Christian Poulsen in his country’s opening match. He received a lenient three-game ban, but without him Italy crashed out at the group stage. A mildly entertaining Totti spitting game is still online.