Raheem Sterling has moved to downplay his altercation with Joe Gomez after being dropped for England’s Euro 2020 qualifier against Montenegro on Thursday.
England have sensationally axed Sterling from the team that will play Montenegro in the game this week after he clashed with Gomez at St George’s Park in a continuation from the fallout of the Liverpool – Manchester City showdown from Sunday.
Sterling is believed to have made a move to Gomez and witnesses have claimed he was asking him if ‘was still the big man’.
Sterling though has since apologised to his team-mates and released a public statement on the incident.
“First and foremost everyone knows what that game means to me!” Sterling wrote.
“Everyone knows that I am not that way inclined and more to the point.
“Both Joe and I have had words and figured things out and moved on.
“We are in a sport where emotions run high and I am man enough to admit when emotions got the better of me.
Raheem Sterling has played down the rift between him and Joe Gomez (Image: GETTY)
“We move this is why we play this sport because of our love for it.
“Me and @joegomez5 are good we both understand it was a 5-10 second thing it’s done we move forward and not make this bigger than it is.
“Let’s get focus on our game on Thursday.”
Tensions generally run high for Sterling when he returns to Anfield with the home crowd goading him with every touch.
That ultimately led to an altercation between Sterling and Gomez, with both players having to be separated by their respective team-mates.
And emotions seemingly remained heightened on Monday when both players reported for England duty.
Raheem Sterling responded with a post on Instagram (Image: INSTAGRAM)
Raheem Sterling and Joe Gomez exchanged heated words when they arrived for England duty (Image: GETTY)
The pair exchanged words – first in a friendly manner – but it soon escalated with the pair once again having to be dragged apart.
It was later announced by the FA and Gareth Southgate that Sterling would play no part in England’s game against Montenegro later this week.
Sterling took to Instagram soon after the news broke to diminish the rift between him and Gomez.