It would appear that the ugly spat between Mason Holgate and Roberto Firmino during last night’s FA Cup third-round meeting between Everton and Liverpool may be about to get much uglier.
The petulant squabble kicked off when Holgate shoved Firmino over the advertising boards at Anfield, only for the Liverpool forward to respond with an angry barrage of abuse. The two players then had to be restrained as various further unpleasantries were exchanged.
Pickford’s pass 😷
Holgate’s push 👎
Davies’ smirk 😬
Firmino in the crowd 😮
No yellow cards given 🤔
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) January 5, 2018
While both players escaped without punishment at the time, Holgate complained to referee Bobby Madley that Firmino also hurled some racist abuse at him in the midst of the furore. Madley then reported the allegation to his fourth official, Jon Moss, who spoke to Holgate again after the match.
All of the above is expected to be included in Madley’s match report, which is to be submitted at some point today. The FA will then have to decide whether or not there is cause to launch an official investigation into the claims.
For what it’s worth, Liverpool have already vowed to cooperate fully should an investigation be forthcoming, with a club spokesman telling the press:
The club and player will fully co-operate with the relevant authorities to ensure the facts are established in a thorough manner if deemed necessary or requested.
While that process is ongoing, we will not be making any further comment.
T-shirts at the ready, boys!