‘I have never shown a lack of respect to anyone in 10 years as a player’: Former Liverpool star Lucas Leiva denies verbally abusing disabled AC Milan press officer during Lazio loss
- Lucas Leiva has denied accusations that he verbally abused a wheelchair user
- The incident took place during heated Serie A clash between Lazio and Milan
- It was alleged Leiva told Milan press officer to ‘stay seated and shut up’
- Leiva said: ‘I’d like to make it clear that the accusations recently made about me after the Milan game are totally false and unfounded’
Lucas Leiva has denied accusations that he verbally abused a disabled AC Milan press officer during Lazio’s 1-0 defeat at the San Siro.
A report in Italian newspaper Il Messaggero alleged that the former Liverpool midfielder told the wheelchair user to ‘stay seated and shut up’ during Milan’s heated 1-0 win.
But Leiva has stringently denied the accusations, labelling them as ‘false and unfounded’.
Lucas Leiva has stringently denied accusations that he verbally abused a wheelchair user
An Italian newspaper report claimed he told Milan’s press officer to ‘stay seated and shut up’
The Brazilian wrote on Twitter: ‘I’d like to make it clear that the accusations recently made about me after the Milan game are totally false and unfounded.
‘It’s my concern to highlight in a peremptory manner this regrettable and totally false fact about me, given I have never shown a lack of respect to anyone in 10 years as a player.
LUCAS LEIVA’S CV
Clubs: Gremio (2005-2007), Liverpool (2007-2017), Lazio (2017- )
Club honours: League Cup (2012), Italian Super Cup (2017)
Individual honours: Liverpool Player of the Year (2011), Lazio Player of the Season (2018)
‘It’s absolutely not part of my professional conduct and it offends not only third parties but also me on a human level.
‘In a football game, when you’re taken over by competitive tension, you can say many things, but there is always a limit that I never cross.
‘Given my education is based on respect and common sense, I could never tolerate such behaviour.’
The incident was allegedly noted by officials and the press officer Ugo Allevi, who has worked for Milan for more than 25 years, reportedly responded to the taunt with an expletive.
Milan have not commented on the matter.
The match itself was a fraught encounter decided by a single Franck Kessie goal for the Rossoneri.
Leiva has rebuked the accusations on Twiter saying they were ‘totally false and unfounded’
At full-time there was a brawl between the players while Kessie and Tiemoue Bakayoko apologised on Monday for parading the shirt of Lazio defender Francesco Acerbi towards the home fans at full-time.
Acerbi had irritated Milan’s stars by claiming there was no comparison between the two team’s players, but the on-loan Chelsea star and Kessie expressed remorse for their actions, insisting it was only a ‘playful gesture’.
Lazio have a game in hand over Milan but they are six points adrift of Gennaro Gattuso’s side, who sit in the final Champions League spot in Serie A.
Leiva has made 80 appearances for Lazio since joining the club from Liverpool in 2017.
Have something to say? Leave a comment: