Cesc Fabregas was heavily involved in the ‘Battle of the Bridge’ fracas, as Erik Lamela stamped on his hand in the 2-2 draw between Chelsea and Tottenham back in May 2016, in a game that saw Spurs surrender the title to Leicester City.
Nine Tottenham players were yellow carded and three Chelsea players received yellow, in a game that tempers flew, but there were no red cards.
The centre referee for that game Mark Clattenburg, has opened up that he let things flow so that he wouldn’t be blamed for Tottenham’s title collapse.
Clattenburg told NBC Sports in Blazers podcast: “I allowed them [Spurs] to self-destruct so all the media, all the people in the world went: ‘Tottenham lost the title.’
“If I sent three players off from Tottenham, what are the headlines? ‘Clattenburg cost Tottenham the title.’ It was pure theatre that Tottenham self-destructed against Chelsea and Leicester won the title.”
“Some referees would have played by the book; Tottenham would have been down to seven or eight players and probably lost and they would’ve been looking for an excuse.
“But I didn’t give them an excuse, because my gameplan was: Let them lose the title.”
Fabregas responded to Clattenburg’s revelation by expressing his shock on Twitter.
— Cesc Fàbregas Soler (@cesc4official) December 4, 2017