Newcastle United

On this day in 2005, Newcastle duo Kieron Dyer and Lee Bowyer started fighting on the pitch.

The Magpies teammates took offence at one another, and started going at one another. Aston Villa’s Gareth Barry broke them up, before the duo were both sent off - and had to pose in a press conference with Graeme Souness as they apologised to one another.

This was something of a throwback to the old days of the English Football League, when referees were more lenient with on-pitch scuffles. There are still occasions when players took things too far - Franny Lee, we are looking at you - but it is rare to see players going at one another in the modern day.

Especially when they are teammates, like Dyer and Bowyer were (not for much longer after the incident, mind).

It may not be great to see on a football field, with people choosing to watch the sport for the joys of football brilliance, but it is hard to deny the great sense of entertainment when a fight starts. It may go against the nature of good sportsmanship, but as viewers we love it, and here are five notable on-pitch bust ups in football history.

Newcastle United - Kieron Dyer vs Lee Bowyer

Leeds United’s Norman Hunter vs Derby’s Franny Lee

Corinthians vs Palmeiras

QPR’s Joey Barton vs Manchester City

West Ham’s John Hartson vs Eyal Berkovic

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