The 47-year-old was held at lunchtime yesterday in leafy Primrose Hill in London, after he was seen drinking in The Queens pub on Regent's Park Road.
Scotland Yard did not name the former Manchester United star, but said in a statement: "Police were called to Regent's Park Road, NW1, at 12.55pm on Wednesday, March 12, following reports of an assault.
"Officers from Camden borough attended and a man in his mid-40s was arrested on suspicion of common assault.
"He was taken into custody and subsequently cautioned for common assault. The victim, a man, did not require medical assistance at the scene."
Cantona's agent in Paris refused to comment.
The ex-French international displayed his fiery temper when he infamously launched a kung-fu style kick at Crystal Palace fan Matthew Simmons after being dismissed in a Premiership match at Selhurst Park in January 1995.
Cantona was later banned for nine months from football worldwide and ordered to do 120 hours community service .
A builder, who did not want to be named, said he had seen Cantona at The Queens at midday and that he had appeared sober and happy, chatting with friends and having a beer.
A barmaid also denied that there had been any disturbance at the pub.
Other shop workers in the road saw the footballer-turned-actor but not any fight.