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Boss backs Bramble after rape claim

Sunderland manager Steve Bruce has given his backing to defender Titus Bramble after he was questioned by police over an allegation of rape.

The 29-year-old was released on bail after being arrested at a Newcastle hotel on Wednesday.

Chairman Niall Quinn backed the player, and Bruce joined him. The manager said: "As far as Titus is concerned, the one thing he wants to do is play football. He was in training this morning. He is a resilient so-and-so.

"We want the matter cleared up as soon as we possibly can and I reiterate what the chairman has put out, how we are fully supportive of him and we will stand right behind him.

"It is obviously unfortunate what has happened and it gets bad publicity and bad press for the club, which nobody wants to see.

"But we are absolutely adamant that Titus has done nothing wrong. If there is anything he has done wrong, then he has had a night out when he shouldn't have."

The former Ipswich Town, Newcastle United and Wigan man was questioned at a Newcastle police station after he and brother Tesfaye, 30, were arrested at a city centre hotel.

A Northumbria Police spokesman said: "Both men have been bailed pending further inquiries." They will answer bail on December 2.

Club chairman Mr Quinn gave the player his full support. He said in a club statement on Wednesday: "This has been a very difficult day for everyone at the football club, no one more so than Titus, who categorically refutes the allegations that have been made against him.

"He strenuously denies any wrongdoing and will be doing everything within his power to clear his name."


From Belfast Telegraph