Graeme Souness pleaded with football officials that day to not make Neil Ruddock a marked man. The Liverpool boss was worried that the flak directed at his stopper following defeat to Blackburn Rovers would make referees overreact with their punishment in future fixtures.
The rugged Ruddock had been subjecting of intense media criticism after being captured on tv in a second-half brawl for which he escaped on-field punishment from the referee. But Souness sprang to the defence of his defended that day.
Graeme Souness said “I don’t care what the pictures show. From where I was sitting, I saw him as the peacemaker. The referee had better sight than any of us and he didn’t caution Ruddock. I only hope he won’t be singled out for special attention unfairly. The incident on Sunday seems to be what people wrote about the most. But that is the age we live in because Ruddock has a very aggressive playing style he has been labelled unfairly.”
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