Woodgate 'cleared' by Leeds over broken jaw incident

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Jonathan Woodgate has been exonerated by Leeds United of any blame following an incident which has left the defender out for the season with a fractured jaw.

Woodgate sustained the injury while out with a group of friends on Tuesday night in his home town of Middlesbrough and underwent surgery at the city's General Hospital.

Yet despite the 22–year–old being the innocent party, Leeds chairman Peter Ridsdale has conceded Woodgate still faces disciplinary club action.

In a statement to PA Sport, Ridsdale said: "Leeds have conducted an investigation and accept Jonathan's explanation that he sustained his fractured jaw at around 10pm on Tuesday night as a result of horseplay with a friend from Middlesbrough.

"Having spoken to hospital officials we are satisfied that Jonathan had not indulged in excessive drinking.

"Jonathan and the club deeply regret the incident. He has been advised that he may face internal disciplinary action."

Cleveland Police today said officers had twice tried to speak to Woodgate about the incident which left him in hospital.

A spokeswoman said: "We have visited Middlesbrough General Hospital on two separate occasions to see if Jonathan Woodgate wants to make a complaint of assault. To date he has declined to speak to police about the incident."

A spokeswoman for Middlesbrough General Hospital later said that Woodgate was discharged some time after 10am today.

The spokeswoman refused to comment on whether the Leeds player had discharged himself or whether he was discharged by hospital staff.