George Best, the former Manchester United and Northern Ireland football legend, was arrested yesterday after an altercation with a tabloid newspaper cameraman he caught taking photos of him in a pub.
Mr Best, who had pledged to give up drinking following a life-saving liver transplant last year, was arrested with a 31-year old man on suspicion of assault and causing actual bodily harm at the Chequers Hotel, in Tadworth, Surrey.
Both men were later released without charge and police refused to reveal further details. A police spokesman said: "No further action is envisaged by Surrey police."
The Mail on Sunday, whose photographer is not believed to have been involved in the dispute, claimed Mr Best, 57, had started drinking again.
His wife, Alex, told the newspaper she had tried all she could to stop him from turning to drink. She told the newspaper: "I feel sorry for the person who died to save George. The last week has been hell. He seems to be on self destruct."
Only last month, Best posed for magazine pictures showing him slim, fit and enjoying life to the full.