Gerrard brought the action after the London freesheet made the allegations in an article and referred to in its editor’s letter on February 2007.
His solicitor, Gerard Tyrrell, told Mr Justice Eady that the article was accompanied by a fax from the Park Lane Marriott Hotel which it claimed was “confirmation of a hotel reservation in London for the Liverpool captain”.
Sport said it confirmed with the hotel that a booking had been made under Gerrard’s name and the editor’s letter in the same issue stated that the fax “purports to come from the Marriott Hotel, and confirms bookings on Monday February 5 for Liverpool and England star Steven Gerrard and one Ramon Calderon, who just happens to be president of Real Madrid”.
Gerrard’s solicitor told the high court the allegations were completely untrue and without any foundation whatsoever. The magazine published the piece without contacting the footballer or his agent to check the accuracy of the allegations.
Its publisher, Sport Media & Strategy, agreed to pay Gerrard undisclosed damages and his legal costs and has undertaken not to repeat the allegations.
A solicitor representing Sport Media & Strategy told the court: “In publishing the article and letter referred to, the defendant had no intention of causing any harm or distress to Steven Gerrard but acknowledges that the allegations are entirely untrue.”
“The defendant apologises to Steven Gerrard for the distress caused to him.”