Spurs, Chelsea could be in hot water after bad-tempered affair
Tottenham and Chelsea could find themselves in trouble after a fractious night at Stamford Bridge with 12 players booked on Monday night.
Eden Hazard scored a late equalizer to secure a 2-2 draw and finally end any hope of Spurs winning the Premier League title as Leicester became Premier League champions.
But it was a bad-tempered evening in west London with nine Tottenham players booked, Chelsea picking up three yellow cards, Spurs midfielder Mousa Dembele appearing to eye-gouge Diego Costa and Blues boss Guus Hiddink tumbling after a mass scuffle at the final whistle.
The nine cards is the most a team has received in Premier League history and Spurs will be hit with an automatic fine from the Football Association. Any team that gets six or more bookings during a game gets charged and gets at least a £25,000 fine.
It was a busy night for referee Mark Clattenburg, who will be consulted on Tuesday morning and it is likely both clubs will be charged with breaching the FA’s Rule E20 – rules surrounding "mass confrontation".
Both sets of players and backroom staff were involved in ugly scenes in front of the tunnel at the end as Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas, whose hand had earlier been trod on by Erik Lamela, confronted Danny Rose with Hiddink losing his footing.
As the brawl intensified, Tottenham’s reserve goalkeeper Michel Vorm clashed with Costa who was then grabbed from behind by Jan Vertonghen as security staff attempted to restore order. Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino tried to diffuse the situation by checking on Hiddink.
Chelsea’s interim boss said: "I took one of my players Fabregas down the tunnel because there were words in Spanish and there were threatening words [from the players] and this is a normal reaction.
"Even at my age, I had no problem falling down! These incidents we mustn’t have but in the end, it was ‘let’s calm down’."
Defender Gary Cahill, scorer of Chelsea’s opener, gave his thoughts on the melee to Sky Sports: "I wasn’t surprised – I always thought it was going to be like that."
Spurs striker Harry Kane added: "It’s the Premier League we are fighting for. It’s what we want to win. There’s going to be some challenges, it was a London derby and the crowd were up for it and we needed to win – that’s just football."
Chelsea center-half John Terry said: "It was a London derby we hadn’t lost in 26 years. It was always going to boil over. A couple of times, it got out of hand but players are fighting for points and titles. It’s emotions – that’s football."
Dembele faces the prospect of a lengthy retrospective ban for his eye gouge on Costa in the first half. Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher described the act as "shocking" and said the Tottenham midfielder’s season was over.
Dembele’s team-mate Dele Alli picked up a retrospective suspension last week for punching West Brom’s Claudio Yacob.
Pochettino could also be in trouble with the FA after being involved in two touchline incidents, including going on to the pitch to separate Chelsea winger Willian and left-back Rose as they clashed.
The Argentine boss said: "Maybe we didn’t set a good example, but it’s a normal emotion, fighting on the pitch.
"I was involved in all of it. I tried to be calm. But it was a derby, we were fighting for the title and Chelsea were fighting to win the game. It’s not personal. It’s football, we are men, they are men, we need to show we are strong."
Chelsea have been punished on three separate occasions this season by the FA for "failing to control players", with fines totaling £155,000. Spurs have been punished once after their game against West Brom in December.