Marouane Fellaini will face no action from the Football Association after he was cleared of intentionally spitting at Sergio Aguero in Sunday’s Manchester derby.
United midfielder Fellaini and striker Aguero clashed in the first half of City’s 1-0 victory at the Etihad Stadium last weekend.
Aguero tumbled to the floor after Fellaini kicked his standing leg and the hosts appealed for a penalty, which was not given.
Fellaini clearly did not feel it was a foul and he bent down to shout at the Argentinian as he lay face down on the floor.
TV replays showed that some spit appeared to exit the Belgian’s mouth as he unleashed his tirade at the striker, but after reviewing the incident the FA’s disciplinary panel believe it was not intentional.
An FA spokesman confirmed the Belgian would not, therefore, receive any kind of retrospective punishment.
Fellaini hit out at suggestions he had spat at the City striker, who scored the derby winner at the Etihad Stadium.
The Belgium international tweeted: “The press loves to invent the stories when there aren’t any.”
”Thanks the journalist. #ferity #tospit.”
United manager Louis van Gaal defended his player after the match on Sunday.
“The TV has shown that he is shouting and sometimes when you shout there’s a little bit of saliva (that comes out) with it,” the United boss told a press conference.
”I don’t think that he’s a spitting figure.”
Van Gaal’s opposite number Manuel Pellegrini said he was unaware of the incident when questioned post-match.