• Premier League

Ivanovic 'declines Suarez apology'

ESPN staff
April 23, 2013
What now for Suarez?

Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic has not accepted an apology from Luis Suarez after the Liverpool striker bit him on the arm, according to reports.

Suarez has been charged by the Football Association and fined by his club over the incident, which happened during the second half of the 2-2 draw at Anfield. It could see him miss at least the remainder of the season.

Afterwards, the Uruguay international tweeted an apology for what he described as his "unacceptable" behaviour.

He wrote that he had telephoned Ivanovic to say sorry and added: "Thanks for accepting" - but reports said that, although Ivanovic appreciated the gesture of the call, he declined to accept the apology.

Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech said his team-mate was "not happy at all", despite telling police that he did not want to press charges.

It was reported that a Metropolitan Police officer, working in conjunction with the Merseyside force, had visited Chelsea's Cobham training ground to ask the player whether he wanted to take the matter further.

Meanwhile, Suarez's fellow Uruguayan Gus Poyet, the Brighton manager, has hit out at what he said was "hypocrisy" in the way the Liverpool player was treated.

Poyet, who has staunchly defended his compatriot in the past, said he believed Suarez was a victim of double standards, saying: "There are players who have done terrible things, apologised after two minutes and have been portrayed as a hero for apologising quickly.

"Luis Suarez apologises immediately and nobody believes the apology. It's sad. Are they living their personal lives by the same rules? I don't like that. There is plenty of hypocrisy in football now."

He said he believed the bite incident had been blown out of proportion, adding that it had done "no harm really" and that bad challenges were worse but seen differently.

"If a player goes over the top of the ball and tries to break a leg? That's good because we are strong and we like the tackle," Poyet explained. "That's where we are in England. I know where I am living, and I adapt and I live with it.

"Luis knows what he has done, he knows he shouldn't do it and it would be better for him, of course, not to have any more issues this year."

He said that, if he were the forward's manager, "I would take him with me somewhere else, to any other country" and added: "If everybody is against him, he will leave."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.