Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti joked he was trying to pull Axel Ngando’s shorts down with his cynical foul in his side’s win over Bastia.
Verratti, 23, tugged at Ngando’s shirt and picked up a yellow card in PSG’s 2-0 victory at Parc des Princes on Friday.
The Italy international’s booking was just his second of the Ligue 1 season and he said Ngando’s shorts were his target.
“I will not make a mistake with the feet because it is dangerous to the opponent,” Verratti said after the win.
“I tried to take the shorts. It was not a good choice.
“I had lost the ball and we were outnumbered. I didn’t want to be at fault for a goal.”
PSG coach Laurent Blanc had suggested Verratti could be sent off with a similar foul in the Champions League.
But Verratti laughed that off, saying: “I don’t think so. It isn’t dangerous to the opponent.
“It is never red.”