Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce has accused foreign players of being more "volatile" over incidents than their British counterparts.
"Jermain Defoe doesn't elbow anybody on purpose," BBC Sport quotes Allardyce as saying. "They make a big fuss about it and that's what they do.
"That's mostly foreign players, they do make a big fuss of it. That's in their nature - I'm not saying it's in the way they are brought up. They react more volatile to incidents like that than we do. We accept that but I don't think Jermain intentionally did it."
The Black Cats remain second from bottom in the Premier League table, four points off safety.