England forward Raheem Sterling came to the defence of England teammate Joe Gomez after some Three Lions supporters booed the Liverpool player when he took the field during a 7-0 Euro 2020 qualifying win against Montenegro on Thursday.
Manchester City’s Sterling, who was dropped by England manager Gareth Southgate after an altercation with Gomez in the canteen at the national team’s St George’s Park training ground on Monday, accepted blame for the incident and said the fans that booed were in the wrong.
Gomez and Sterling had squared up the day before during Liverpool’s 3-1 win over City at Anfield in a top-of-the-table Premier League clash.
Sterling watched England secure qualification for the Euro 2020 finals from the stands, but took to social media after hearing some fans target Gomez with booing.
“To all the England fans, I wanted to leave things as it was but tonight I have to speak again: it was hard for me to see my team mate get booed for something that was my fault,” Sterling wrote on Twitter.
To all the @England fans, I wanted to leave things at it was but tonight I have to speak again : it was hard for me to see my team mate get booed for something that was my fault. Joe hasn’t done anything wrong & for me to see someone who keeps his head down and work hard..
— Raheem Sterling (@sterling7) November 14, 2019
“Joe hasn’t done anything wrong and for me to see someone who keeps his head down and works hard, especially after a difficult week for him, to be booed when he came on tonight was wrong.
“I’ve taken full responsibility and accepted the consequence. I felt as though I had to say this.”
Southgate said he did not understand why some fans had picked on Gomez.
“No England player should ever be booed. We are a team and Joe has done nothing wrong, I made that clear earlier in the week so I don’t understand that,” Southgate said.
“Him and Raheem are very close and the whole team are very close so we don’t want to see anybody treated that way.”
Information from Reuters was used in this story.