Diego Costa clashed with his Chelsea boss Antonio Conte after growing fed-up with being screamed at from the touchline.
Fans thought the striker indicated he wanted to come off during the win against Leicester to avoid a suspension, as he was only one booking away from a ban, or because he had a slight knock.
But Mirrorsport understands he was actually furious at what he saw as Conte’s criticism of his performance.
Star Costa, the Premier League’s leading scorer, has presented the Italian with his first big test since taking over in the summer.
In scenes reminiscent of his clash with then-boss Jose Mourinho last season, the 28-year-old dared Conte to substitute him if he was not happy with his display in the 3-0 victory over the reigning Premier League champions.
The controversial marksman – who also exchanged angry words with former Juventus and Italy coach Conte afterwards – was later told in no uncertain terms not to repeat his actions.
Mourinho dropped Costa for the very next game after a similar set-to last November.
It remains to be seen whether Conte will act in a similar way after this challenge to his authority.
Conte is well known for enthusiastically micro-managing his players from the touchline.
During the second half on Saturday, Costa’s patience snapped. He gave his manager both barrels from the pitch and was still fuming after the final whistle, before later calming down.