Stoke City striker Saido Berahino has claimed the eight-week ban he served earlier in the season was a result of his drink being spiked in a nightclub.
The news of his ban only surfaced after his £12m move from West Brom to Stoke in January after his did not feature for the Baggies from September onwards.
However, Berahino has absolved himself of blame, claiming someone put something in his drink and the fact that the level of drugs found in his system was “really low” proves there was no intent to take the illegal substance.
“To be banned for something you really haven't done is hard to take,” he told BBC's Football Focus.
“You go on a night out, you don't know who you are around and there are people who are out to get you.
“Of course, I was in a nightclub, so I hold my hand up for being irresponsible.
“From then on it all crashed down. To this day, I still cannot understand who would want to do that to me.”
At the time Tony Pulis said he was not playing due to a lack of match fitness but Berahino has rejected suggestions the club tried to protect him and claimed he wanted to leave the club he joined as an 11-year-old because he “hated the place”.
“No-one protected me at that club,” he said.
“It was hard not doing what I really love - that's what killed me the most.
“Waking up in the morning, playing football and having a smile on your face – not doing that was the hardest thing for me.
“I was depressed. Every morning I walked in the training ground I didn't want to be there.
“Going from loving something and hating the place that has made you is hard to take. Hate is a strong word but I really didn't want to be there.
“That is one of the reasons I didn't sign the contracts they put on the table. It was not about money, it was about my happiness.”