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Man Utd rue failure to land Kompany

Manchester derby 5 hours ago
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By ESPN Staff
Jan 3, 2006

Gerrard 'surprised' over stamping accusations

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard admitted he was 'surprised' at being accused by Sam Allardyce of deliberately stamping on Bolton counterpart Kevin Nolan.

Nolan was quick to absolve Gerrard of all blame for the incident in Monday's 2-2 draw at the Reebok Stadium.

There was no doubt Gerrard did tread on Nolan's chest while he lay on the floor, leaving stud marks, but the England midfielder insists there was no malice behind his action.

Allardyce claimed Gerrard should have been sent off, but the Reds skipper was unequivocal in his response.

'I'm very surprised he is trying to make an issue of it,' Gerrard told Sky Sports.

'It was a complete accident - he fell into me. I am mates with Kevin Nolan. He's a good Scouser so why would I ever try to deliberately hurt him?

'We spoke at the end of the match. I wished him all the best for the rest of the season and the tackle wasn't even mentioned.'

The fiery contest saw Liverpool's run of 10 successive Premiership wins come to an end, and they were on course for defeat until substitute Luis Garcia's fine finish in the closing stages.

Trotters skipper Nolan would not back any action taken against Gerrard for his challenge.

He avoided punishment during the game, yet the Football Association could take action if referee Mark Clattenburg missed the incident.

'I just think Steven's accidentally stamped on me,' said Nolan.

'His full weight was on his leg so it hurt but it's just one of those things.

'I thought it might have been deliberate at the time because he hurt me. I wanted to have a look at it and I have now and I don't think there was anything in it.

'I don't think anything should happen to him now because it would not be deserved.'

An angry Allardyce argued that both Gerrard and midfield colleague Mohammed Sissoko were lucky to stay on the pitch. Sissoko was accused of wilfully treading on former Liverpool striker El-Hadji Diouf.

'Gerrard stamped on Nolan, and Sissoko stamped on Diouf. They are plain and clear to me,' said Allardyce.

'Both should have been sent off. It is not anything other than intentional from my point of view.

'That's sad, because the outcome would probably have been three points for us rather than a draw.'