Cantona `attacks TV reporter'

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The Independent Online
ERIC CANTONA, the disgraced Manchester United football star, was accused last night of attacking a television news reporter with a flying kung-fu kick similar to the one for which he has been banned for the rest of the season, writes John Shirley. He is also alleged to have gripped the journalist in a headlock and dragged him across a beach.

ITN reporter Terry Lloyd said that he and a two-man crew approached Mr Cantona yesterday on a public beach on the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe, where the former French team captain is on holiday.

Mr Lloyd said they wanted to know when the footballer planned to return to England. Last Wednesday, Mr Cantona failed to report to police for questioning over an attack on a Crystal Palace fan two weeks ago.

The footballer ignored ITN's questions, said Mr Lloyd. "He then grabbed me in a headlock and said `Come with me, I'd like a chat with you'." He told the other crew members they should go "somewhere quiet".

Mr Lloyd went on: "Suddenly, without warning, he came running at me, launched into the air and kicked me in the chest." While he was down on the sand, Mr Cantona stood over him and said: "I'm going to kill you."

An ITN spokesman said police had confiscated their film, saying they would give it to Mr Cantona, who is due to appear before an FA disciplinary committee on 24 February.

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