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City fan who ran on pitch apologises

Matthew Stott is restrained by Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart Photo: PA Images

The Manchester City fan who ran on to the pitch and tried to confront Rio Ferdinand in Sunday's derby match has apologised, his solicitors said.

Matthew Stott, 21, had to be restrained by City keeper Joe Hart and was arrested following Robin van Persie's late winner at the Etihad Stadium.

He was subsequently charged with pitch encroachment.

Speaking through his solicitors Stephen Lickrish and Associates he confessed his guilt - and said sorry to the Manchester United defender.

In a statement, the landscape gardener, from Knutsford, said: "I would like to apologise to all those affected by my actions yesterday, particularly Mr Ferdinand and the other players.

"I am extremely ashamed of my actions. I have let myself down, my family down, my fellow fans down and Manchester City Football Club.

"I intend to write personally to Mr Ferdinand to express my extreme regret and apologies and also apologise to Manchester United and their fans.

"I have been a fan of Manchester City Football Club all my life and I have been a season ticket holder for three years and I attend the games with my father. I have had the same seat in the section next to the away fans for those three years."

Rebecca Caulfield, solicitor at Stephen Lickrish & Associates, representing Stott, said: "He has never been to court before and has never been in trouble with any of the stewards at Manchester City Football Club before, or at any other ground.

"He is extremely remorseful and is mortified by his behaviour, which is completely out of character."

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