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21st Feb 2023

Jake Humphrey apologises to Liverpool fans for reading “false statements” in Paris

Lee Costello

Liverpool fans

“I think the treatment on the night was a disgrace.”

BT Sports’ Jake Humphrey has apologised to Liverpool fans for reading “false statements” before the Champions League final last year in Paris.

The final between Liverpool and Madrid had delayed the kick off time due to trouble outside of the grounds, and the public were lead to believe this was the fault of the English fans.

Humphrey was presenting the final for BT Sport and repeated the governing body’s stance at the time, which pointed the finger at Liverpool fans.

Liverpool fans

A UEFA-commissioned review into the treatment of fans outside the final found failings “almost led to a disaster” after faults by European football’s governing body and the lack of a venue risk assessment by French authorities.

Liverpool play Real Madrid in the last 16 of the competition and at the presenter issued his apology at the very start of the show.

“We are hugely regretful that we were reading out those false statements,” Humphrey said as he opened the show. “The only statements shared on the big screens as we were inside the stadium was a completely false narrative.

“I just want to say sorry to all the people involved in this football club, the stress was added to you because of us sharing that information, which we now know to be completely false.

“The truth is that those football fans that were being accused were out there saving the lives of other football fans, including our family members and our friends.

“If lessons aren’t learned, then next time that this happens there could be even more of a tragedy than we saw on that night in Paris, so let’s hope those lessons are taken on board, absolutely, but it can’t be repeated often enough – Liverpool fans absolutely not to blame for what happened that evening despite the initial messaging that came from the governing body.”

Former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard joined Humphrey as a pundit to cover the match, and claimed that the whole ordeal was “not good enough.”

Liverpool fans

“I think that news was very welcome in this stadium and amongst every Liverpool fan because it’s not good enough,” Gerrard said.

“I think the treatment on the night was a disgrace. I think it’s the only time as a pundit I’ve never really enjoyed it – we didn’t have no signal inside the ground, no internet connection.

“We were getting the wrong information fed to us and there was a lot of confusion. You have family and friends that are outside the stadium and the treatment was a disgrace basically.

“Thankfully the independent investigations have come clear and there’s no blame for Liverpool fans which is important.

“That’s what Liverpool fans do, they stick together, they try and help each other and they’re there for each other. I think the important thing now as well as moving forward is there needs to be accountability.

“This investigation’s took too long and now that it’s clear and the truth’s out, someone needs to be held accountable and we’ll see what happens moving forward.”

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