Luis Suarez has said he did not bite Italy's Giorgio Chiellini on purpose at the World Cup, but that he "lost balance" and fell on him…
In what is arguably a classic “dog ate my homework” defence, Suárez claimed the incident was an accident.
Luis Suarez' excuse, depicted in one simple comic pic.twitter.com/6X54JvvUCM— Mark Magowan (@_magowan) June 28, 2014
The Uruguay striker, who has been banned for nine international matches and from all football for four months over the attack, made the claims to Fifa's disciplinary panel.
"In no way it happened how you have described, as a bite or intent to bite," he wrote in Spanish, in a letter dated June 25.
"After the impact ... I lost my balance, making my body unstable and falling on top of my opponent.
"At that moment I hit my face against the player, leaving a small bruise on my cheek and a strong pain in my teeth."
Twitter users were unsurprisingly somewhat sceptical of the Uruguay striker's defence…
Suarez's excuse is about as reliable and palatable as Baldrick's cappuccino— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) June 28, 2014
Suarez's excuse is amazing. I certainly know that when I lose my balance, I too try to regain it by using my teeth.— Steph (@chibchenko) June 28, 2014
Suarez's defence is laughably bad. If you're actually offended or upset about it, cheer up. It's downright hilarious.— Simon (@PhantomGoal) June 28, 2014
There's crass stupidity, there's boundless ignorance, and then there's people who believe Luis Suarez' excuses— United Rant (@unitedrant) June 28, 2014
So when Suarez's daughter doesn't complete her homework on time, she goes to school with the excuse that 'my father ate it?'— Azmar Khattak (@AzmarKhan) June 28, 2014
Suarez's excuse is embarrassing, he's scarred what was turning out to be one of the best world cup's we've seen.— Paul Murray (@PaulJLMurray) June 28, 2014
The player could be seen holding his teeth following the clash with Chiellini but the seven-strong panel dismissed Suárez’s argument after studying the incident from 34 camera angles.
The bite was “deliberate, intentional and without provocation,” the ruling stated in paragraph 26 of the panel’s conclusions.