WATCH: Former Russia captain Shirokov HOSPITALIZES referee in vicious attack after being denied penalty in amateur match
Shirokov, who won 57 caps for his country during a career spent at clubs including Zenit St. Petersburg and Moscow teams Spartak and CSKA, was filmed savagely lashing out at referee Nikita Danchenkov during a 'Moscow Celebrity Cup' match.
The 39-year-old Shirokov insulted the official after being denied a penalty, reportedly threatening to punch him if he gave him a red card for his abuse.
When Danchenkov duly pulled out the card Shirokov attacked, decking the official with a punch before kicking him as he lay stricken on the pitch.
Судье снимают побои. Будут обращаться в полицию.Ударил по лицу, пошёл добивать pic.twitter.com/AEZhjrtZgO— Дмитрий Егоров (@edim_sport) August 10, 2020
Pictures shared on social media after the incident showed damage to the area around Danchenkov's left eye.
Судья после Широкова. Лицо, шея, тело pic.twitter.com/qih5UlwiYG— Дмитрий Егоров (@edim_sport) August 10, 2020
The referee later gave an update on his condition, saying on Instagram that he had spent more than four hours being assessed in hospital.
"I spent four to four and a half hours in the hospital, then another 15-20 minutes in the treatment room," he said.
"They put stitches everywhere, and did some examinations. Most importantly, everything seems to be fine."
Danchenkov and event organizers have reportedly said they will contact police over the attack.
Shirokov, who spent the bulk of his club career at Zenit, winning the UEFA Cup and Super Cup with the team in 2008, was appearing in the tournament for sports channel Match TV.
He has since been suspended from his duties as a pundit, as has former Spartak Moscow midfielder Andrey Tikhonov, who was playing alongside him and appeared to insult a reporter filming footage of the scenes.
Анлрей Валерьевич Тихонов и оператор pic.twitter.com/kLaLxJyMos— Дмитрий Егоров (@edim_sport) August 11, 2020
Shirokov took to Instagram on Tuesday to apologize for his actions, although still appeared bitter over the referee's penalty decision.
"I would like to express my sincere apologies to (the referee) for such an inappropriate act," wrote Shirokov, sharing a picture of the official.
"I am perfectly aware that not assigning an obvious penalty and then the red card shown cannot be a reason for throwing my hands around, I hope Nikita as soon as possible will return to service.
"I also want to apologize to the organizers of the tournament, my teammates Match TV and viewers."
Meanwhile, tournament organizer German Popkov branded Shirokov's behavior “disgusting.”
"There was an ordinary episode, Roman's dispute with the referee, and then the beating began.
“This is unacceptable, disgusting and terrible. [It’s] very strange behavior.
"A lot of people saw it live, all this from a million angles. And this is from people with whom we are completely friends.”
Shirokov retired in 2016, having captained Russia during that year's European Championship clash with Wales. He played 57 times in all for his country, scoring 13 goals.