Suarez and club issue apologies
Published 21/04/2013 | 21:31
Luis Suarez has apologised to Branislav Ivanovic after biting the Chelsea defender during the 2-2 draw at Anfield.
Suarez apologised first via his Twitter account and then through a statement issued on the club's website for an incident that came before he scored a dramatic equaliser seven minutes into stoppage time.
"I am deeply sorry for my inexcusable behaviour earlier today during our match against Chelsea," Suarez said in his statement. "I have issued an apology and have tried to contact Branislav Ivanovic to speak to him personally. I apologise also to my manager, playing colleagues and everyone at Liverpool Football Club for letting them down."
Earlier on Twitter, Suarez had written: "I'm sad for what happened this afternoon, I apologize Ivanovic and all football world for my inexcusable behaviour. I'm so sorry about it!!"
The club have also responded to the incident, which came when the two players clashed following a challenge in the Chelsea penalty area. The club's managing director Ian Ayre has cancelled a trip to Australia to deal with the fallout from the incident.
In a statement, he said: "Luis has made an unreserved apology for his actions today. His behaviour is not befitting of any player wearing a Liverpool shirt and Luis is aware that he has let himself and everyone associated with the club down. We will deal with the matter internally and await any action from the FA."
Manager Brendan Rodgers had claimed in his post-match interviews that he had not seen the incident, but later said: "Having reviewed the video footage and spoken to Luis, his behaviour is unacceptable and I have made him aware of this."
Suarez looks set to face a Football Association investigation into the incident, which was not seen by referee Kevin Friend but later highlighted by numerous television replays.
It is not the first time Suarez has brought controversy to the club - he was banned for eight matches last season after being found guilty of racially abusing Patrice Evra - and he has previous history of biting. Immediately prior to joining the Reds in January 2011 he served a seven-match ban while at Ajax after sinking his teeth into PSV Eindhoven midfielder Otman Bakkal.
Suarez later returned to Twitter to say he had spoken directly to Ivanovic. "I've just spoken to Ivanovic on the phone and I could apologise directly to him. Thanks for accepting," he wrote.