Arsenal loanee Matteo Guendouzi has been accused of lying about the injuries he sustained during Marseille’s chaotic match against Nice on Sunday.
The match was abandoned after Nice fans stormed the pitch to confront Dimitri Payet, who had reacted angrily to being struck by a bottle thrown from the stands.
Former West Ham winger Payet launched the bottle back, prompting some home supporters to jump over the advertising hoardings and get past stewards onto the pitch.
All hell then broke loose, with players from both sides and fans confronting each other in ugly scenes which saw kicks and punches thrown.
French prosecutors and football authorities are now investigating the incident which saw Marseille players Payet, Guendouzi and Luan Peres, as well as their manager Jorge Sampaoli, involved.
After the players had returned to the dressing room, pictures emerged of the injuries apparently sustained by Marseille’s players during the scuffles.
A mark on Payet’s back and scratches on Peres’ neck were shown, along with apparent strangulation marks on Guendouzi’s neck.
However, those injuries have been called into question by Nice president Jean-Pierre Rivere, who has suggested they were not sustained on the pitch.
“Apart from the photo that is everywhere, there has been no violence against OM players,” he toldL'Equipe .
“By the way, Guendouzi, with pictures to prove it, has no marks on his neck when he is on the pitch.”
Rivere added to RMC."What catalysed things was the reaction of two Marseille players [Alvaro Gonzalez and Guendouzi] who met the fans.
"It is disappointing that it ends like this. Things are quite clear. Marseille's security should not have come onto the pitch and hit our players.
“I don’t really understand why Marseille didn’t restart.”
Marseille's director of communications, Jacques Cardoze, hit back, insisting that an independent doctor had verified Guendouzi's injuries.
“There are cuts, we had an independent doctor in Marseille. There will be medical certificates,” he said.
“These are elements that will allow the investigation of the League and the disciplinary committee to be carried out.”
The recriminations for the incident will continue for some time, with Nice’s 3-0 walkover victory awarded by governing body Ligue de Football Professionnel unlikely to stand ahead of a hearing taking place on Wednesday.
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The hosts had led 1-0 at the time of the melee in the second half through Kasper Dolberg’s strike.
The match was only abandoned after Marseille refused to return to the pitch, due to worries for their players’ safety, and club president Pablo Longoria confirmed the away side will challenge the decision to award Nice the points.
“We need to set precedents for French football,” Longoria said.
“The referee was with us. He confirmed to us that safety was not assured.
“His decision was to abandon the match, but the LFP decided to restart the match. That is not acceptable for us.”
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