Andy Wilkinson has been charged with violent conduct by the Football Association for allegedly elbowing Mario Balotelli during Stoke City and Manchester City's Premier League draw.
As Gaël Clichy prepared to take a throw-in Wilkinson appeared to strike Balotelli, who fell to the ground and, after receiving treatment, expressed his irritation to referee Andre Marriner.
Clichy was clearly seen motioning to the officials Balotelli had been elbowed, but the only footage shown of Wilkinson appearing to strike the Italian striker was grainy.
Marriner however did not see the incident, and that has enabled the FA to take retrospective action against the Stoke full-back.
Wilkinson, 28, has until 6pm on Wednesday to respond to the charge. Should he be found guilty he will serve a three-match ban.
The defender - who emerged from Stoke's academy - has been red carded twice previously playing for the club against Manchester United and Portsmouth.