By Paul Jones
Swansea City assistant coach Alan Tate could have his collar felt by the FA after a bust-up with Birmingham City’s Jon Toral.
Tate put his hand to the throat of the Spanish player as he left the field at half-time during the Swans’ goalless home draw.
Both Swansea head coach Steve Cooper and Birmingham manager Aitor Karanka claimed they had not seen the incident.
But with referee Gavin Ward also having missed it, the FA are likely to examine video footage and former Swansea stalwart Tait could find himself subject to retrospective disciplinary action.
Swans head coach Cooper said: “I didn’t see it, clearly. It certainly didn’t carry on down the tunnel because I went down there. Afterwards, it was fine – no dramas.
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“I haven’t spoken to Alan. I was more interested in the game.”
Blues boss Aitor Karanka said of the clash: “I didn’t see anything because I was in the tunnel. The only thing I told them at half time was to forget what happened.
“If the referee has seen something and not done anything then I don’t think he’s doing his job. If he didn’t say anything it’s because he didn’t see anything.”
It was unclear what had sparked Tate’s anger, although there had been finger-pointing between Tate and Birmingham players earlier in the half.
As the players left the field, Tate approached Toral and shoved him by the throat, although the midfielder seemed to throw himself top the ground with exaggerated force.
The dispute was enough, though, for players and management from both sides to erupt into a melee of shoving and pushing.
There was not much as eye-catching on the field, although former Cardiff City goalkeeper Neil Etheridge did deny Marc Guehi with a superb save late on to make an impressive debut.
Birmingham’s best effort was a header from Harlee Dean that Freddie Woodman was able to keep out, but Karanka was the happier.
“I’m really pleased because it’s a second game against another team that was in the play-offs last year and this was another really good performance,” added Karanka, whose team beat Brentford last week.
“I could see a really committed team on the pitch, a really organised team with an amazing attitude.
Cooper added: “I’ll never be happy with only a point at home, but there were games like this one where we lost last season. Still, it’s a game we should have won.
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“It’s clear we do need a striker, but it’s difficult to get the players we want when we haven’t got any money to spend.”
“We’re frustrated not to win the game, and I think we always should be if we don’t win home games.
“I don’t think from a lack of trying. I think we did have some good moments in the game.
“We started well but didn’t quite carry the momentum as we’d have liked to in the first half and sort of let them get a bit more of the ball up the pitch.
“Second half I thought we completely controlled the game, it was a game in their half. But we just didn’t do enough to get enough chances on goal.
“I know the goalkeeper has made an excellent save from Marc fairly late on, and I know we got into good positions where we flashed balls across the box and things like that, but for our in possession play, our frustration is that we didn’t do more with the good positions that we got in.
“I also think we’re still getting up to speed. We’ve only been in four weeks, and that’s normally two-thirds of your pre-season.
“We should be pleased with another clean sheet, they’re not the easiest thing to do in this league. I do think there were games like that last season that we lost.
“So if there’s a small step forward there then we’ll take it, but it’s a game we should have won and a game we want to be winning going forward.”