Belfast Telegraph

Gone in 38 seconds, Steven Gerrard says sorry for seeing red

By Sam Wallace

Liverpool legend apologised for his extraordinary red card against Manchester United, brandished 38 seconds after he came on for Liverpool at the start of the second half of their 2-1 home defeat to Louis van Gaal's side.

The United manager described the victory as one of the biggest wins of his illustrious career, and it puts United in pole position to claim the fourth Champions League place ahead of Liverpool and Tottenham, who they have beaten in their last two games. But it was overshadowed by the remarkable incident involving Gerrard.

The Liverpool captain was a second-half substitute for Adam Lallana and was almost immediately dismissed for stamping on the leg of Ander Herrera. He gave an interview to Sky Sports in the aftermath of the game in which he apologised for his actions and took responsibility for the defeat. He said: "I've got to accept it. I've let my team-mates, manager and more importantly the supporters down and I take full responsibility for that.

"I think I've tried to avoid his tackle and I've reacted when I've seen his studs showing. But I've been in the game long enough to know when you do that with 45 minutes to play and a great opportunity to get back into the game, I take full responsibility.

"I've reacted to the initial tackle, but I don't want to say too much more. I wanted to apologise to the supporters and I take full responsibility for the result."

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers was reluctant to criticise his player, instead saying that the 34-year-old might have been reacting to Liverpool's poor first-half showing. Gerrard was barracked by United's away fans while he warmed up.

The Ulsterman said that he was pleased Gerrard had been "man enough to apologise". And Rodgers added: "He was purely wanting to make an impact."

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