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Liverpool skipper Gerrard charged by police

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has been charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm and affray following an alleged nightclub brawl, Merseyside police said.

Gerrard was charged with two other men who had also been arrested after a "disturbance" outside a late-night bar in Southport, Merseyside in the early hours of yesterday.

Gerrard, who has 70 caps for his country, was celebrating at the club in Southport when trouble broke out at about 2.30am on Monday.

The Times says it is understood that the alleged victim, Marcus McGee, who was a DJ at the club, was sitting behind the bar when Gerrard asked him to change the music. He is then said to have asked for the music card that operates the sound system. Mr McGee apparently refused.

Gerrard and five other men aged between 18 and 33 were arrested after the row. The Liverpool player was released from custody early this morning.

Mr McGee, a father of two who is thought to be a supporter of Liverpool's great rival, Manchester United, was taken to hospital, where he received treatment for facial injuries before being released. His family said that he suffered a cut nose and swollen eye and was given four stitches. He also lost a tooth.

Mr McGee's mother, Patricia McGee, 61, said last night: "He was only with his partner in the bar. I have absolutely no idea how he became involved in this. He was just out for a drink. The whole family is shaken up."

John Watts, a lawyer whose daughter Eve was hosting a birthday party at the venue, said that Gerrard had been in good spirits during the night. He said: "He bought a bottle of champagne for my daughter when he found out it was her birthday. It was a really civilised occasion in a middle-class bar."

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Tribal Football Staff

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