Stéphane Henchoz is facing a Football Association investigation into allegations that he spat at the Sheffield United manager Neil Warnock after the final whistle of Liverpool's semi-final success here last night.
The Swiss international, usually so unflappable, made a point of running towards the dugout at the end of extra-time and became embroiled in a row with Warnock. Once the Liverpool coach Sammy Lee had shepherded the visiting manager away from the defender, Henchoz strode back to the centre circle, picked up the ball and flung it in Warnock's direction.
"Henchoz spat at me at the end which wasn't very nice and I had a word with Sammy Lee about it," said the United manager, whose steady stream of comments, dripped across the Pennines since the first leg, had clearly enraged Liverpool for all their public protestations to the contrary.
"Sammy knows what went off, Henchoz knows what went off.
"I'm sure there will be a reason why he spat on the floor. He was the only one. I don't know, but all the other Liverpool players were magnanimous. All of them. But then he's not English, is he, so you expect one or two things like that."
"Neil does a good job at his club but, at times, he speaks a bit too loud," said the Liverpool manager Gérard Houllier, who laughed off the threat of FA action against his defender, who will already miss Sunday's FA Cup fourth-round tie at Crystal Palace through suspension. "Neil's said a lot of things that were wrong about us in the build-up to this game, and I've found that unprofessional.
"Most players spit out on the pitch and Stéphane was angry, but he didn't spit at him or in his direction. I was there, I saw it. Stéphane Henchoz spat on the ground. He was not happy because he knew Neil had been winding us up since the first leg.
"I don't think he spat in his direction - he spat at the floor. I don't think it will be in the referee's report and, if the FA gets involved in that, that'll be stupid. I hope they get involved in what he [Warnock] said because I heard what he said."
Surely a candidate for the first ever sore winner