Manchester United defender Jonny Evans is still insisting he did not intend to spit at Newcastle United’s Papiss Cisse and says that type of behaviour is for "idiots".
The 27-year-old reacted angrily during Manchester United’s 1-0 win at St James’ Park earlier this month with TV replays appearing to show him spitting at the Magpies striker.
Evans denied the charge but the Football Association decided his actions warranted a six-match ban, while Cisse was suspended for seven games after a clearer spit in the aftermath of the clash because of an earlier suspension for violent conduct.
"I did not have the intent to spit at an opponent, so when the FA charged me with that I could never accept it," Evans told The Times.
"To spit at anyone is one of the most disgusting things you can do; it’s low and cheap. I would never think to spit at someone. You just look like an idiot.
"So I can totally understand there is an image around that, and in the British game and our society it’s not something that is accepted, and rightly so.
"But I was able to go home and look my mum and dad in the eye because if I’d genuinely spat at someone I think they would have been disgusted in me.
"It’s not the background I come from in Northern Ireland. My mum and dad would have given me a rollicking if I had done that."
Although he says he would not spit at another player, Evans admitted that he is a ‘habitual’ spitter in general and has been criticised by his wife Helen several times, and stated he was working to cut it out of his game and believes it could be a nervous habit.
He added: "In training this week I turned to spit and thought, ‘No, I can’t spit’ and tried to stop myself. So that’s something I’m trying to work on."
Evans has still to serve part of his ban and will miss the Premier League games against Liverpool, Aston Villa, Manchester City and Chelsea.