Former Tottenham midfielder Sandro has revealed how he broke up a fight between two teammates at half-time.
The two players in question are Rafael van der Vaart and Benoit Assou-Ekotto. Both Van der Vaart and Assou-Ekotto were known for being big characters in the Spurs team at the time, so it’s not surprising that they got into a fight.
The fight happened after the Dutchman nabbed a promising free-kick opportunity without permission from Assou-Ekotto who was their designated free-kick taker then.
This did not go down well with the Frenchman who had a go at Van der Vaart in the dressing room.
Sandro recalled the incident while speaking to Ladbrokes Fanzone (via Daily Star):
“Assou took this very personally.”
“He was very upset because, to him, that was his ball – he was going to shoot. As a group of guys playing with him, generally whenever Assou wanted to do something, we just left him to it… let him do it, you know?”
“In this moment, he was mad. At half-time, we get into the dressing room and he’s punching Rafael! I tried to grab hold of him, he was so strong as well, so I’m grabbing holding of him and dragging him back because he’s trying to attack Rafa.”
“[He’s saying] ‘why did you take the shot? Why did you do this? It’s my ball, my friend… you don’t take it! Next time, I kill you!’ He was so angry.”
“The next day, we turn up to training and Van der Vaart comes over to me and says ‘Sandro, you saved my life… thank you very much’.”
Jermaine Jenas previously narrated his version of the story in which he stated that the two of them were going at it completely naked.
“We get in (after the game), everyone is getting changed and then suddenly I hear this commotion in the showers. It’s Rafa and Benoit going at it! It got stopped pretty much immediately but it just shows that these things happen a lot, just not on the pitch.”
Assou-Ekotto has also previously spoken about the incident claiming that the dressing room brawl ended up bringing them closer.