Jamie Carragher has revealed that he feared his “horrendous” tackle on Nani would leave his long-standing reputation in the game in tatters.
Carragher’s shin-high tackle left Manchester United winger Nani with a deep cut on his leg back in 2011.
Indeed, the Portuguese had to leave Anfield on a stretcher, with Carragher only receiving a yellow card.
Writing in a column for The Telegraph, Carragher reveals the deep regret he instantly felt after making the challenge.
“My thought process was skewed and I got it badly wrong, mistiming my tackle in a way which looked awful,” the Reds legend said.
“I felt terrible when I watched it back. I could not sleep that night, my mind preoccupied with the horrendous tackle and the public response to it.
“It appalled me to think my reputation might be sullied by one incident after the hundreds of robust but fair tackles in my career.”
Carragher relived his experience in a bid to shed further light on the controversy surrounding Jordan Pickford.
The Everton goalkeeper has received lengthy criticism for his challenge that left Virgil van Dijk with a serious injury.
But Carragher feels no player wants to cause such harm to a professional colleague.
“I was relieved Nani was not seriously hurt, because I have never met a player who wants the thought of damaging a fellow professional’s career on their conscience,” he added.
“Although my sympathy lies entirely with Virgil van Dijk as he starts his recovery from anterior cruciate surgery, I cannot agree with the suggestion Jordan Pickford deliberately set out to hurt his rival.”
Pickford ‘sad’ over Van Dijk challenge
Earlier this week, Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti insisted that Pickford was “really sad” about the incident.
The Italian coach added: “Jordan arrived a little bit later but his intention was to try to reach the ball. It was not to hurt Virgil van Dijk.
“To say it was premeditated, and this and that, in my opinion, is too much. Virgil van Dijk knows this.”