Gerrard’’s England career not in danger after arrest for assault

December 30th, 2008 - 1:03 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Dec.30 (ANI): Liverpool and England footballer Steven Gerrard’’s career with the national team is not in danger after he was charged on Tuesday with assault occasioning actual bodily harm and affray following an argument over music being played in a restaurant that allegedly escalated into a violent brawl. Gerrard, 28, was charged over the alleged fracas in which Marcus McGee, a company director, lost a tooth and needed four stitches to a head wound.
According to The Sun, Gerrard was released from custody at Southport police station almost two hours earlier after police interviewed him and the other five men, aged between 18 and 33 - none of whom are teammates of Gerrard - for most of the day.
Inspector Swan, spokesman for Merseyside Police, said in a statement: “Merseyside Police have charged Steven Gerrard, 28, of Formby, John Doran, 29, Ian Smith, 19, both of Huyton with Assault causing Actual Bodily Harm and affray following an incident in Bold Street, Southport. All three men will appear at North Sefton magistrates on January 23rd. Three other men who were interviewed over the same incident have been bailed. They were released earlier.”
The charges, under section 47 of the Offences Against the Person Act, carry up to five years in jail.
Wearing a white t-shirt and smart black trousers, Gerrard attempted to cover his face with his hands before being driven away in a black Citroen Xsara people carrier, believed to be driven by his father.
The Liverpool captain had been celebrating Sunday’’s 5-1 win over Newcastle United, in which he scored twice, when a row is said to have broken out involving McGee about the music being played at The Lounge Inn in Southport, Merseyside.
Gerrard is understood to have asked McGee, a friend of the restaurant’’s owner, if he could borrow a swipe card which staff must use to operate the music system behind the bar.
McGee is said to have refused to provide his card.
McGee, 34, a father of two, also suffered cuts to his face and a swollen eye.
He declined to talk about the incident as he recovered at his home in Southport, but his mother Patricia said: “He was just out for a drink with his partner and I have no idea how he became involved in this.
Gerrard has been told his England career under Fabio Capello is safe - for now. FA chiefs will only consider his position if he is convicted of a serious criminal offence.
Any case against Gerrard is unlikely to come to court before Englands next game away to Spain on February 11. (ANI)

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