A FOOTBALLER lost three teeth after he was punched in the face by an opponent during a friendly five-a-side match.

David Simpson was attacked after tackling Adam Wainman from behind during the evening game at Goals Bradford in Swain House, the city's Crown Court heard today.

Wainman, 21, of Wainman Street, Shipley, denies assaulting Mr Simpson and causing him actual bodily harm more than half an hour into the match on November 12 last year.

Mr Simpson told the court he went with a friend to take part in the friendly game that did not have a referee.

He said Wainman had the ball and he tackled him from behind.

There was some pushing and shoving and he accidentally tripped over Wainman's boot.

Mr Simpson alleged Wainman turned round and asked him why he did it before lashing out without warning.

"He grabbed my head with one hand and hit me with the other," he told the jury.

Mr Simpson said the blow caught him in the mouth, knocking out two of his teeth and displacing another one.

The missing teeth were retrieved from the pitch and put back in at the hospital.

They had since died and the displaced one was extracted, leaving him minus three teeth.

Mr Simpson denied threatening Wainman verbally or physically.

Jon Gregg, Wainman's barrister, suggested Mr Simpson carried out a hard tackle at him.

When Wainman pushed him in the chest with both hands, Mr Simpson deliberately kicked him on the foot.

"You called kicked him again and it was then that he punched you," Mr Gregg added.

Another player, Christopher Ball, told the jury Mr Simpson pushed Wainman into the wooden barrier round the pitch.

A few words were exchanged and play resumed but a few minutes later, Mr Simpson tackled Wainman from behind in the centre of the pitch and kicked at his legs.

Wainman turned and hit him in the face.

Mr Simpson pulled him towards him and threw punches to defend himself.

Two men players intervened and pulled them apart.

The trial continues.