Gerrard charged with assault

December 30th, 2008 - 8:34 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Dec 30 (IANS) The Liverpool and England midfielder ­Steven Gerrard was charged Tuesday with assault occasioning actual bodily harm and affray following an incident at a Southport bar which left a man needing hospital treatment for facial injuries.Gerrard, one of six men arrested following the incident, was charged with two other men after being held by the police for nearly 24 hours following his arrest at the Lounge Inn, a venue in a quiet part of the Merseyside town.

He was released in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

A high-powered sports car - owned, it is thought, by the player - was still parked outside the bar.

Inside the bar and restaurant, it was easy for onlookers to make out the mess. On a table near the window were smashed drinks glasses. Drops of blood could be seen under a bar stool - evidence, ­perhaps, for the four Merseyside detectives who turned up later.

Quite what happened, to whom and how, was still unclear, but by the early hours of this morning, Gerrard was still in police custody after a night out to celebrate his team’s comprehensive defeat of Newcastle United Sunday.

The alleged victim was the club’s 34-year-old DJ. The Lounge Inn is a favoured nightspot for celebrities in the genteel seaside town.

One report suggested Gerrard and a group of his friends were involved in an altercation after the man refused to allow them to choose the songs played on the venue’s sound system. Gerrard is a big fan of Phil Collins and counts the singer’s greatest hits as his favourite album.

Neither the police nor Liverpool were prepared to give any details of the fracas that led to a man being taken to hospital for treatment for cuts to his face. It was also reported that the injured man had lost a tooth, but he has been released from hospital.

The timing of the incident could not come at a worse time for Liverpool. The club has a real chance of winning the Premier League - it hasn’t claimed the title in 19 years. On Sunday Gerrard was the club’s star player in a 5-1 thrashing of Newcastle, scoring twice.

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