Sam Allardyce leapt to the defence of his Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe after he drew the ire of Manchester City's Nicolas Otamendi.
Sergio Aguero scored the only goal of the game as City kept up with Premier League leaders Leicester City on Tuesday.
Otamendi was furious with Defoe after what he perceived to be a deliberate elbow, but Allardyce said it was not in the Englishman's character to do such a thing.
"Jermain Defoe doesn't elbow anybody on purpose. They make a big fuss about it and that's what they do," Allardyce told Sky Sports after the game.
"That's mostly foreign players, they do make a big fuss of it. That's in their nature - I'm not saying it's wrong, it's in the way they are brought up.
"They react in a more volatile way to incidents like that than we do. We accept that but I don't think Jermain intentionally did it."
Allardyce went as far as to say that the referee was more lenient with City's players than his own.
"The referee was so lenient with City it was untrue," he said.
"They committed 16 fouls and it took 12 or 13 fouls before he booked one of their players.
"We committed four when he booked our first player in the second half, so I thought he was extremely lenient with City."