Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has played down the significance of the club’s training ground bust-ups this season.
Twice players have not seen eye-to-eye at Carrington after Jerome Boateng and Mario Balotelli’s tangle was followed by Emmanuel Adebayor and Kolo Toure’s scrap.
City’s exposed training ground means that every altercation is picked up by the watching media, although Mancini accepts that player disagreements are part and parcel of the game.
Mancini was accustomed to squaring up to team-mates as a player in training and is happy letting the matter pass providing the quarrel ends once the session finishes.
"Sometimes we fight for them [the photographers] so they can sell their pictures," he joked.
"I played football. I know that in every team sometimes these things can happen. When you stay and train every day and play a match at 100 per cent, it can happen this way.
"I had a fight on the training ground about five times in my career. One time when I was young I had a fight in training against an English player who was playing with me at Sampdoria – Trevor Francis.
"I don’t remember the cause of it because it was about 25 years ago, but I remember the fight very well. It’s important that afterwards, it was finished.
"I’m not bothered about the headlines, no, no, absolutely not. I like players to be competitive on the training ground, but this happens at every club.
"We give a fine to the players for fighting because we mustn’t do this, but it happens again. Sometimes not, sometimes it’s better to.
"It’s never serious because it starts and finishes in two minutes and in the dressing room everything is finished. We fine the player, the player pays and in the end any money may go to charity.
"We call it creative tensions. I understand that this can happen sometimes – not always – but it can happen sometimes. I’m not worried because it’s not serious. It’s for stupid things, always."