Hillsborough charity refuse 1k Davies donation as backlash against comedian's rant rages
18:55 GMT, 10 April 2012
Rant: Arsenal fan Alan Davies
The Hillsborough Justice Campaign has refused a 1,000 donation by Alan Davies following his comments about the Hillsborough disaster.
The comedian received a backlash from fans after mocking Liverpool's insistence that they never play on the anniversary of the disaster.
'The HJC has not accepted the 1,000 paid into it’s paypal account by Alan Davies,' the charity said in a statement issued on Tuesday evening.
'Whilst we accept his apology, we would prefer that he genuinely tried to understand why the decision never to play on the anniversary of the Hillsborough Disaster is so important.'
Davies caused controversy after speaking on a podcast, and launching into a rant over the Merseyside club’s refusal to stage matches on April 15 in tribute to the 96 fans that lost their lives on that date in 1989.
The 46-year-old, talking on 'The Tuesday Club', was discussing Liverpool's insistence on playing city rivals Everton this coming Saturday in the FA Cup semi-finals.
It means Chelsea must play their semi-final with Tottenham on the Sunday even though this comes just three days before their Champions League first leg clash with Barcelona.
Davies said: 'Liverpool and the 15th – that gets on my tits that s***. What are you talking about “We won’t play on the day” Why can’t they'
The podcast presenter Ian Stone attempted to reason with Davies by saying: ‘Because it’s too sad a memory.’
However, the TV star responded: 'Do they play on the date of the Heysel Stadium disaster How many dates do they not play on
'Do Man United play on the date of Munich Do Rangers play on the date when all their fans died in that disaster whatever year that was – 1971'
Target: Kenny Dalglish was also criticised by Davies on the podcast
He then turned his anger on Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish, adding: 'Every interview he’s given this season he looks like he wants to headbutt the interviewer. This tight-mouthed, furious, frowning, leaning forward, bitter Glaswegian ranting, “Liverpool FC do not play on April 15th”.'
After attempting to impersonate Dalglish, Davies admitted his effort was 'terrible because I hate him'.
Gunners fanatic Davies then turned his fire on arch rivals Spurs by saying: 'What vermin run that club. They always have. Absolute vermin. Scum of the earth.'
Davies took to Twitter to defend his comments, saying Liverpool should be made to play their semi-final on the 15th as it is unfair on Chelsea, but claims he supports the need for a full inquiry into the disaster at Hillsborough 23 years ago.
He said: 'I'm getting tweets from Liverpool fans who have been given the impression that I was disrespectful to those who lost their lives on 15/4/89.
'Many disagree but I feel that the Liverpool v Everton semi-final could be played on Apr 15. Apologies to those upset by that suggestion.
Tragedy: Ninety six Liverpool fans lost their lives on that fateful day in 1989
'I said the Hillsborough disaster was the worst event in modern peacetime history. I was on a terrace listening to a radio as it happened.
'I agree that there must be a full enquiry into Hillsborough but not playing on the 15th doesn't change anything. It's not fair on Chelsea.'
Pundit Stan Collymore hit out at Davies on Twitter, writing: ‘I support the right of any club not to play on days of tragedy at their club. Any club. Don’t mock others right to commemorate tragedy.
‘United, Rangers, Juventus, Liverpool, Bradford and many more. I respect their right to commemorate their clubs by not playing on those dates.
‘And on a podcast, as a celebrity calling Spurs fans vermin is out of order. Banter, great, vermin, no. Doesn’t matter who chooses to play or not to play. That is THEIR choice.'