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Raheem Sterling ‘completely shocked’ at race attack

Karl Anderson, 29, has been jailed for 16 weeks at Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court after pleading guilty to racially aggravated common assault.

The court heard that Anderson had kicked and shouted racial abuse at Sterling on Saturday, just hours before the midfielder scored twice to help his side to a 4-1 demolition of Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium.

CCTV shown in court revealed how Anderson drove his van alongside Sterling’s vehicle as the player waited to enter the training ground.

Raheem Sterling ‘completely shocked’ at race attack
Raheem Sterling ‘completely shocked’ at race attack

Both men then got out of their vehicles and Anderson walked towards Sterling.

At that point, Anderson began shouting racial abuse at Sterling, according to Carl Miles, prosecuting.

Mr Miles said Anderson called the footballer “you black Scouse c***” and told him: “I hope your mother and child wake up dead in the morning you n*****.”

“He sets out kicking Mr Sterling to the legs on four occasions,” Mr Miles added.

The assault left 23-year-old Sterling “completely shocked”, according to a statement that was read out in court.

“I didn’t think this type of behaviour still happened in this country in this day and age,” Sterling added.

Anderson, who was arrested on Tuesday, has a history of football-related violence.

He had 25 previous convictions for 37 offences, including throwing a flare at a police officer during a football match, the court heard.

He was also subject to a football-related violence banning order which prevented him from attending certain matches, Mr Miles said.

Sentencing, chairman of the bench Diana Webb-Hobson, called the incident “an entirely unprovoked attack” and called Anderson’s record “appalling”.

Anderson’s defence lawyer, John Black, said his client had asked Sterling for an autograph for his girlfriend, who was in the car with him, but lost his temper.

“He apologises through me to Mr Sterling for his actions,” said Mr Black, adding Anderson “bitterly” regretted the incident.

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