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FA support Sterling for 'honest and heartfelt account' following gun tattoo outrage

The Man City star posted a message on Instagram explaining the meaning of the tattoo.

Image: PA Wire/PA Images

THE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION has expressed support for Raheem Sterling after he was criticised for having a tattoo of a gun.

Pictures emerged of the Man City star showing the tattoo of an M16 rifle while training with the England squad, which prompted outrage from anti-gun campaigners as well as criticism from The Sun newspaper.

Sterling explained in an Instagram post that the tattoo was a tribute to his late father, who was shot and killed when he was just two.

“I made a promise to myself I would never touch a gun in my lifetime,” he wrote.

“I shoot with my right foot so it has a deeper meaning, and is still unfinished.”

An FA spokesperson has since issued support for Sterling following is quoted by BBC Sport as saying:

We all support Sterling and acknowledge the honest and heartfelt account he gave.

The statement added: “He and the rest of the squad are focused solely on preparing for the forthcoming World Cup.”

Sterling has earned 37 caps for England and is set to start as Gareth Southgate’s team take on Tunisia, Panama and Belgium in the group stage of the World Cup this summer.

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