Liverpool defender Skrtel inks Hillsborough tattoo on fan in bid to raise cash for families
17:16 GMT, 18 December 2012
Martin Skrtel turned out to be a natural tattoo artist when the Liverpool defender took part in a charity inking session to raise money for the victims’ families of the Hillsborough disaster.
In a show of solidarity, 96 football fans bustled into a tattoo studio in Liverpool to take part in the challenge, and one was even willing to let first-timer Skrtel try his hand at inking his his back.
The event was organised by tattoo artist Will Holmes, but special guest Skrtel wasn’t prepared to leave him in the lurch when it came to inking some of the fans.
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Dab hand: Martin Skrtel coloured in the numbers 96 on Barry Nicholls' back
The Slovakian defender helped tattoo the back of an employee of the football club, Barry Nicholls, according to the Liverpool Echo.
Barry said: ‘Martin agreed to come and pledge his support, which we were really pleased about.
‘We thought he had done tattooing before, so to find out he hadn’t when he turned up was a little alarming.’
The 28-year-old Skrtel, who has plenty of tattoos himself, seemed pretty competent as he put some colour into an eternal flame on the back of his brave volunteer.
But Barry was in safe hands, as Skrtel was coached through his first-time inking by an expert.
Skrtel said: 'Before I came here I didn't know a lot about Hillsborough but once I got used to being at the club, I started to understand what had happened.'
Brave man: Barry Nicholls volunteered to allow Skrtel to colour a tattoo on his back
'I think it is great that the Liverpool supporters and the club have stuck together to fight for justice for the victims of the Hillsborough tragedy.'
An impressive 1,000 was raised from tattoos as well as 500 for a shirt signed by Skrtel.
Demand was so high for the tattoos on offer at the Royal Ink Tattoo Studio in Anfield that they had to compile a reserve list for those who wanted to be inked for the cause.
All the money raised on the day will go towards the fight for justice for victims, survivors and families of the Hillsborough tragedy, which claimed 96 lives in 1989.
Former Liverpool players Kenny Dalglish and Alan Hansen, comedian John Bishop, musicians Paul McCartney and Robbie Williams have also joined forces under the moniker of the Justice Collective and released a charity cover of He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother in a bid to top the charts at Christmas to raise money for the worthy cause.
Bouncing back: Skrtel will hope Liverpool can improve after being beaten by Aston Villa at the weekend
VIDEO Skrtl is a natural at more than just football!
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