Liverpool striker Luis Suarez has apologized for not shaking the hand of Manchester United's Patrice Evra prior to Liverpool's match on Saturday against Manchester United.
Suarez was suspended on Dec. 20, 2011 for eight matches for racial abuse of Evra during a match between the two clubs on Oct. 15, 2011. Suarez apparently felt the suspension was unjustified and refused to shake Evra's hand during Saturday's pre-match handshake ceremony, which led to some jostling between the two teams before they were separated by referees. The match then proved to be a very tense affair, with Suarez kicking a ball angrily off of the pitch just before halftime before both clubs apparently engaged in a confrontation in the tunnel while heading back to the dressing rooms after the first half ended.
Since refusing to shake hands with Evra, an act that was criticized by the media, as well as Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, the Liverpool striker has apparently seen the error of his ways and issued an apology on the Liverpool website. From the Guardian:
"I have spoken with the manager since the game at Old Trafford and I realise I got things wrong," Suárez said. "I've not only let him down, but also the club and what it stands for and I'm sorry. I made a mistake and I regret what happened. I should have shaken Patrice Evra's hand before the game and I want to apologise for my actions. I would like to put this whole issue behind me and concentrate on playing football."
Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish also apologized for defending Suarez's act in a televised post-match interview. More from the Guardian:
"I was shocked to hear that the player had not shaken hands having been told earlier in the week that he would do," Dalglish said. "All of us have a responsibility to represent this club in a fit and proper manner and that applies equally to me as Liverpool manager. When I went on TV after yesterday's game I hadn't seen what had happened but I did not conduct myself in a way befitting of a Liverpool manager during that interview and I'd like to apologise for that."
According to the Guardian, the whole incident left Liverpool's American owners -- the Fenway Sports Group, headed by Boston Red Sox owner John Henry -- extremely displeased with the club and the way they have mismanaged the entire situation, from Suarez to Dalglish.
Manchester United won the match, 2-1, thanks to two Wayne Rooney goals. Suarez scored Liverpool's only goal on the day.
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