Bastia have a bit of a reputation. With 12 red cards in 28 Ligue 1 matches this season, they unsurprisingly prop up the fair play table of France’s top flight, and Nicolas Saint-Ruf did little to help their cause on Saturday.
Shortly before the interval in their scoreless draw against Saint-Etienne, the former Montpellier centre-back challenged for a loose bouncing ball with Vincent Pajot but succeeded only in catching the midfielder with a roundhouse kick about the head.
Pajot was knocked out by the blow and collapsed to the ground with a sickening thud. After receiving lengthy treatment on the field, he was replaced at the break by Fabien Lemoine – who was also to be sent off in the second half.
Saint-Etienne boss Christophe Galtier has confirmed that Pajot will be fine, however.
“It was a great scare,” he admitted. “He regained consciousness in the tunnel. I hope he can re-join the team as soon as possible.”