Shamed footie pundit Jamie Carragher last night issued a grovelling apology for spitting on a 14-year-old girl – as her family begged Sky Sports not to sack him.
The £1m-a-year pundit spat at the teen and her dad while driving his Range Rover following Liverpool’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester United on Saturday.
But her family hit out at demands for the ex-Liverpool and England defender to be stripped of his lucrative presenting gig.
Her dad, 43, who filmed the shocking video, told the Daily Mirror: “We don’t want him to lose his job. It is not about that. We wanted an apology and explanation.
“He seems contrite. Everyone makes mistakes, we are all human.”
His wife, 38, added: “He did seem extremely sorry.”
Carragher was suspended after:
Last night reports claimed that cops in Manchester have no plans to arrest either Carragher or the man who filmed him.It is understood that Greater Manchester Police will offer the man “advice” rather fining him £200 and putting six points on his license – which using a mobile phone at the wheel allows them to do.
A spokesman for the AA said both he and Carragher should be sent on driver awareness courses over their behaviour on the road.
Carragher allegedly phoned the girl and her father on Sunday night and said: “I just want to apologise and I hope you are OK.” The youngster told him: “OK, thanks for apologising.”
Appearing on Sky News just moments after he was suspended, Carragher was made to watch the footage as he appeared in a excruciating interview live on the channel.
He almost broke down as he was taken to task by interviewer Sarah Hewson during the TV spectacle, as he made a desperate bid to save his job and reputation.During the interview, he was even asked to comment on tweets posted by furious fans, ex-footballers and celebrities.
He described his actions as a “moment of madness”, adding: “I have no excuse and it’s devastating for the family involved and my own family.”
He said: “I have no excuse. My biggest regret is for the 14-year-old girl to be caught in the middle of this, my altercation with the father.
“Because it is a young girl it feels slightly worse to me. I have a daughter of the same age and if someone had done that to her I don’t know how I would respond.
“I called the family, obviously they were upset last night. Hopefully the family can accept that apology from me.”
“My mother and father would be the same. [My kids] are disappointed, upset…
The way that father sees his daughter is how I see mine.
“All I can do is apologise as much as I can. I can’t go back. I’ve done that with the family and hopefully they accept that.”
Asked if he deserves to keep his job, he replied: “There’s no doubt what I have done is disgusting, I’m getting vilified and rightly so.
“I would hope five seconds of madness will not take over everything of what I’ve done – I don’t feel like that’s a real representation of me.”
Carragher added he has not offered his resignation and the future of his role is “Sky’s decision”.
He said: “I haven’t offered my resignation but they have made it known that they are very disappointed about the shame now hanging over the name.
“I’m still in talks with Sky and whatever they feel is the right action for me going forward I’ll have to accept.
“There’s no doubt that my action in some people’s eyes would be a sackable, it’s whether those people at the head of Sky decide that.
“I just hope working for four or five years at Sky they know my character and that this is a one-off incident where I lost it.”
In a statement, Sky Sports said: “Sky takes this matter extremely seriously and strongly condemns Jamie’s actions, we have made that clear to him in person today and suspended him from his duties. It falls well below the standards we expect of our people.”
Danish TV station TV3 Sport has also confirmed Carragher will no longer analyse Manchester United’s Champions League clash with Sevilla for the station following the incident.
The former Liverpool defender had just watched his side lose 2-1 to Manchester United at Old Trafford and says he was being goaded by the girl’s dad when he wound down his window and spat at the pair and drove off.
Video footage shows how the pair exchanged an initial wave, before the dad shouted: “Unlucky Jamie lad!” and “2-1!”
When the teasing continued Carragher spat – hitting the teenager who was in the passenger seat and leaving her in tears.Police can bring assault charges over spitting – or prosecute as a public order offence.
Carragher has said previously in a football column that players spitting at each other is “vile”.
He wrote in 2015: “As usual, there have been a number of people who have said ‘it is the worst thing that can happen on a pitch.
“It is vile but let me assure you now I would have preferred Lucas Neill to have spat at me the day he broke my leg in September 2003.
“I was spat at once in my career. It came during a UEFA Cup game against Celta Vigo in 1998 and the player in question was a Russian midfielder called Aleksandr Mostovoi.
“I was shocked more than angry when he did it because I couldn’t believe what had happened.”