Newcastle United striker Aleksandar Mitrovic has apologised to the club’s doctor following a touchline argument as he tried to return to play in Sunday’s clash against Sunderland despite sustaining a head injury.
Mitrovic scored the equalising goal in a 1-1 draw in a crucial Tyne-Wear derby at St James’ Park, but was briefly knocked unconscious shortly afterwards following a challenge by Lamine Kone.
As per Premier League protocol, Mitrovic was not allowed to play any further part and the Serbia striker had to be restrained by doctor Paul Catterson and manager Rafael Benitez in order to prevent him returning to the pitch.
Mitrovic has now apologised to Catterson, claiming he was unaware of the rule.
“I didn’t know what the procedure was. I didn’t know the rules,” he told Serbian newspaper Blic.
“I apologised to the doctor after the game because I knew I had to come off after being knocked unconscious for a few seconds. I’ve been through the examinations, my head is fine.”
Newcastle may have prevented Sunderland winning a seventh straight derby clash, but they remain in 19th place and three points adrift of safety.