Tuesday 22 October 2019

Getting it all out in the open: Soccer's most high-profile 'internal' bust-ups

Newcastle pair Kieron Dyer and Lee Bowyer were sent off in disgrace after tearing strips off each other during a Premier League game against Aston Villa back in 2005
Newcastle pair Kieron Dyer and Lee Bowyer were sent off in disgrace after tearing strips off each other during a Premier League game against Aston Villa back in 2005
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Aston Villa duo Anwar El Ghazi and Tyrone Mings were involved in a heated exchange during Monday night's Premier League game against West Ham, as they joined a long list of team-mates who have been involved in high profile bust-ups.

John Hartson and Eyal Berkovic (West Ham)

Back in 1998, Israeli international Berkovic started a scrap with towering striker John Hartson at West Ham's Chadwell Heath training ground and there was only going to be one winner.

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John Hartson lashes out at Eyal Berkovic during a West Ham training session back in 1998
After Berkovic punched Hartson on the back of the leg, the Welsh striker responded by kicking him in the head, with the incident caught on camera as it became headline news.

Bruce Grobbelaar and Steve McManaman (Liverpool) 

Liverpool were at Goodison Park for a Merseyside Derby in 1993, with a youthful McManaman taking on veteran goalkeeper Grobbelaar after on spat on the edge of the box. After Grobbelaar grabbed McManaman's chin while screaming in his face, the winger snapped back by thrusting a shove in the face of the Zimbabwean.

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(l-r) Liverpool team-mates Steve McManaman and Bruce Grobbelaar square up back in 1993
"It's strange that after all these years, people still ask me about that incident," states McManaman. "Bruce was a fiery guy and to be honest he terrified me most of the time, so the incident ended there and then."

Teddy Sheringham and Andy Cole (Manchester United)

Cole made his England debut when he came on for Sheringham at Wembley in 1995, with the less than warm handshake offered by the more senior international as they passed each other on the touchline creating a tension that didn't lift during their time together at Manchester United.

The duo confirmed they barely spoke to each other despite playing on the same United team for four years, with Sheringham revealing the feud was put to bed when the pair bumped into each other in a London restaurant a few years later.

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Craig Bellamy celebrates scoring a goal for Liverpool during the 2012 Carling Cup semi-final second leg against Manchester City
Craig Bellamy and John Arne Riise (Liverpool)

Bellamy fell out with his fair share of team-mates, rivals and referees during his colourful career and his spat with Liverpool colleague Riise in 2007 is one of his more infamous.

The striker attacked Riise with a golf club over his refusal to join in on some team-bonding karaoke and after goading him all night to get up and sing, Bellamy followed him back to his room and attacked him with a golf club. He toasted his goal against Barcelona a few days later with a golf swing celebration.

Lee Bowyer and Kieran Dyer (Newcastle)

Bowyer's fiery temperament often got the better of him and during a game against Aston Villa in 2005, he turned his venom on team-mate Dyer. 

Ireland defender Stephen Carr was among those trying to break up the dup as they exchanged blows at St James' Park, with Newcastle manager Graeme Souness allegedly telling the duo he would punch both of them if they allowed their animosity to boil over again on the pitch.

David Batty and Graeme Le Saux (Blackburn)

Reigning Premier League champions Blackburn were playing a Champions League match Spartak Moscow in November 2005 when Le Saux aimed a punch at his team-mate Batty.

Hardman Batty attempted to hit back at Le Saux, but was pulled away from the incident by Blackburn skipper Tim Sherwood.

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Roy Keane and Mick McCarthy fell out before the 2002 World Cup. Photo: SPORTSFILE
Roy Keane and Mick McCarthy (Ireland)

The simmering tension between Keane and McCarthy boiled over on a summer tour of America, when the duo were players under Jack Charlton's management.

Their relationship barely thawed after that incident in Boston in 1992 and ten years later, their infamous clash in Saipan saw Keane walk away from Ireland's World Cup training ground and throwing manager McCarthy's preparations into turmoil.

Joey Barton v Ousmane Dabo (Man City)

Dabo claimed he was left 'looking like the Elephant Man' following his training ground fight with Barton during a Man City training session.

Barton was later given a suspended four-month jail sentence after admitting a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, while he was also handed a ban by City in an incident that ended his time at the club.

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