The final minutes of the clash between Rangers and Slavia Prague witnessed angry scenes. Rangers players were annoyed by Slavia Prague defender Ondrej Kudela’s actions. Gerrard now vows to stand by his player.
In a foul fracas, Kudela was seen covering his mouth and appeared to whisper some words towards Kamara. Kamara was then seen screaming in the direction of the referee following Kudela’s words.
Ranger’s player led by Goldson Connor charged toward the referee on hearing what was allegedly said. However, it was not clear what was uttered to Kamara.
The BT sport pundit Stephen Craigan said: “It looks like he has been abused in some way, we don’t know-how. But the fact he has covered his mouth shows he wants it to remain private.
“He has traveled 60 or 70 yards to get involved in an incident across the pitch.”
The drama did not stop even after the full-time whistle. Steven Gerrard, Rangers coach could be seen talking to some Slavia Prague players and coaching staff.
Tv footage showed Gerrard and Slavia Prague coach Jindrich discussing with the officials after the match as they spoke in length about what ensued. Gerrard finally broke out the bombshell that his player told him that he was racially abused.
Gerrard while speaking to reporters, he said:
“Sometimes in you career there are things that happen that are more important than the game, that are above football. That’s what’s happened tonight.
“First, I’ll deal with the football side. We were beaten by the better team over the two legs so congratulations to Slavia. They deserved it and in no way do I want to sit here and be a bad loser and come out with any excuses. I’m really proud of my player for the efforts and the journey they took us on.
“In terms of the other incident, I have to be careful what I say but you build relationships in football and I have built a very, very strong relationship with Glen Kamara.
“Glen Kamara to me is one of my own. I 100 percent believe what he is saying in terms of the accusation. Other players around him heard it.
“I will stand with Glen Kamara and deal with it however he wants to deal with it. I’m proud of all of my players tonight. They showed solidarity and from the top of this club to the bottom we stand with the players.
“It’s over to Uefa now, this situation, and I just hope it doesn’t get brushed under the carpet.
“I feel angry right now. It’s difficult to describe how I feel because I know Glen, I trust him 100 per cent. It’s extremely disappointing and there’s too much of it happening around football.
“The Slavia player has caused this, caused the situation to escalate even further because straight away the fans join in and the racism just grows and grows and grows.
“Something needs to happen quickly, that is above me. But 100 per cent I stand with Glen.
“There was a lot of commotion around that we tried to defuse and this will be taken on by Uefa. I’m sure they will speak to both players and we will let other people deal with it.
“All I can confirm is that my player tells me that he was racially abused.
“I tried to call Glen over during the game but he didn’t want to. I was going to ask him if he wanted to leave the pitch and I would have backed him whatever his decision was.
“The players stayed on the pitch and it was played to a conclusion. It’ll be taken out of my hands now and be dealt with by Uefa.
“I just hope, with all my heart, that people deal with it because that situation is not normal.
“If I wanted to say something to you on a football pitch, why do I need to cover my mouth with my hands.
“They were 2-0 up at the time and we had nine men. What’s disappointing to me is that there are people trying to defend the opposition player. Their people are trying to defend him.”
Speaking on the state of Kamara’s mindset after the incident, Gerrard said: “Devastated would be an understatement. This is a cool, calm kid and it’s not him to accuse someone of anything. It’s not him.”