At the start of a week in which football comes under the microscope again, Steven Gerrard has told Luis Suarez to shake hands with Patrice Evra and has urged supporters of Liverpool and Manchester United to forget "vile" chants.
The Liverpool captain, whose young cousin died at Hillsborough, finds references to that disaster and the Munich air crash distasteful and he is using the meeting of the two clubs at Anfield today in the wake of last week's Hillsborough revelations to demand a new sense of responsibility.
He has promised to give the same message to Suarez, who was banned for eight matches after racially abusing Evra in the last Anfield game between the sides almost a year ago. When the teams next met, at Old Trafford in February, the Uruguayan provoked further indignation by ignoring Evra.
Racism is back on the agenda with Lazio supporters under investigation from Uefa for aiming monkey chants at Tottenham's Jermain Defoe and Aaron Lennon in a Europa League tie on Thursday. Tomorrow Chelsea captain John Terry, who was found not guilty of racially abusing Queens Park Rangers' Anton Ferdinand, faces an independent Football Association tribunal on a similar charge, which he denies.
Gerrard said: "My advice to [Suarez] would be to shake hands and move on. I think those two players could be the key."
Evra could be on the bench today, but Sir Alex Ferguson says he will decide on footballing grounds.
Asked if those involved in a Hillsborough cover-up should be punished, Gerrard said: "I hope so. If there's people that deserve it, then of course."Reuse content