‘I am ashamed’: Guardiola apologises to Gerrard for raising Anfield slip
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‘I am ashamed’: Guardiola apologises to Gerrard for raising Anfield slip

Pep Guardiola has apologised to Steven Gerrard for his “shame” at citing the slip that had a major impact on Manchester City’s 2013-14 title triumph.

The manager referred to the incident last week when offering reasons not to strip titles from City should the club be found guilty of any of the Premier League charges.

Gerrard’s fall came in April 2014 at Anfield and allowed Demba Ba to run through and score in Chelsea’s 2-0 win. The loss, coming in the third-to-last match, derailed Liverpool’s title challenge and allowed Manuel Pellegrini’s team to overtake them.

“I apologise to Steven Gerrard for my unnecessary and stupid comments I said the last time about him,” Guardiola said. “He knows how I admire him and his career and what he has done for this country I am living and training in.

“I am ashamed of myself for what I said because he doesn’t deserve it. I truly believe my comments about defending my club, but I didn’t represent my club well putting his name in these stupid comments. I apologise. I said to him personally, but I comment publicly and have to do it here as well. I am so sorry to him, his wife, Alex, his kids and family because it was stupid.”.

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A dejected Steven Gerrard after his slip opened the way for Chelsea’s Demba Ba to score at Liverpool in April 2014.
A dejected Steven Gerrard after his slip opened the way for Chelsea’s Demba Ba to score at Liverpool in April 2014. Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian

City face 101 charges related to alleged financial wrongdoing and deny them all. On Friday Guardiola said: “Come on – those moments belong to us. They absolutely belong to us, regardless of the sentence they belong to us. The goal from Agüero, when Balotelli slipped [him in]?

“I don’t know if we are responsible for Steven Gerrard slipping at Anfield. Was that our fault? I have respect for Steven Gerrard – but that moment belongs to us. The moments that we lived these years together, the Premier League will decide. But I know what we won and the way we won it. I know the effort we put in.”.

Erling Haaland remains a doubt for Wednesday’s trip to Arsenal where victory would make City league leaders on goal difference.