West Brom star Jake Livermore in altercation with fan over 'dead son remark'
3 January 2018, 16:03
West Bromwich Albion and England midfielder Jake Livermore became embroiled in an altercation with a rival fan - allegedly over remarks about the footballer's baby son, who died in 2014.
The incident, which saw the 28-year-old climb into the stands, took place after he was substituted during his side's 2-1 away defeat to West Ham United on Tuesday.
The London club has since identified the fan involved after he was ejected following the confrontation, which led to the former Tottenham Hotspur player being escorted down the tunnel.
West Brom said their player had the club's "total support" in a statement on Wednesday, which said the player had already been subjected to "general abuse from home supporters which he shrugged off" before the alleged incident.
The statement said: "He acknowledges that he moved to confront one spectator who chose to make a comment about the death of his infant son.
"The club would like to think that all right-minded football supporters could understand this reaction, which did not result in any physical exchanges, before Jake was led away to our dressing room.
"Jake is an outstanding young individual who has the total support of everyone at the club and he has made it clear he considers this statement to be an end to an unhappy incident."
The Football Association requested observations from all those involved.
West Ham United said it intended to take swift action and is considering implementing a stadium ban over the incident.
After the game, West Brom manager Alan Pardew said he saw Livermore enter the crowd, but did not know what had motivated it.
He said: "The only thing I know is I see Jake in the crowd, which disturbed me. Obviously you don't want to see a player in the crowd.
"There's no way he's going in the crowd - because I know him, he's a great lad - unless he was provoked severely. That's all I know."
West Ham manager David Moyes said he did not see the incident. He said: "I didn't know about it, but I've been told something happened."
Livermore tested positive for cocaine in April 2015 and played three further matches before being suspended by the FA.
But he subsequently escaped a further ban after the FA decided the death of his new-born son in May 2014 was an overwhelming mitigating factor.
(c) Sky News 2018: West Brom star Jake Livermore in altercation with fan over 'dead son remark'