scotland news

Hearts winger Santana: I do not spit at opponents

September 1, 2009

Hearts winger Suso Santana has denied deliberately spitting at St Johnstone defender Danny Grainger.

Suso and Grainger were involved in a touchline altercation during the first half of Sunday's 2-2 Premier League draw at McDiarmid Park.

It emerged after the game that Grainger had been caught by some saliva from Suso, who manager Csaba Laszlo substituted early in the second half as a result of the incident.

Suso is adamant catching Grainger was a complete accident, a claim the St Johnstone player has already said he accepts.

Suso told Hearts News: ''I do not spit at opponents. That is not my style as I respect all my fellow professionals. What happened was that when I turned my head away to spit, the St Johnstone player moved to get the ball and I caught him on his back.

''I saw right away what had happened and quickly cleaned up the back of his shirt, apologised to him, he accepted it right away and we shook hands. He knew it was an accident.

''I am sure if he thought I had done it deliberately, he would have reacted far differently.''

Being accused of deliberately spitting has affected Suso, who added: ''Of course I am upset, as I don't do this sort of thing. I have never been accused of this before in my career. What happened has been blown out of proportion and it's upsetting.''