Liverpool FC captain Steven Gerrard has won an undisclosed libel settlement from a magazine that alleged he had secret dealings with Real Madrid with a view to moving to the Spanish giants.
An article published in Sport under the headline "World Exclusive!? Is Gerrard moving to Real Madrid?" insinuated that Gerrard and Real president Ramon Calderon had been staying at the same hotel at the same time during January.
The magazine substantiated the assertion by claiming it had received photocopies of faxes proving that both had reservations for London's Marriott Park Lane Hotel.
However, as well as issuing a full apology, the magazine has now refuted the assertions made in the article.
A statement issued by Sport magazine said: "We unreservedly apologise to Steven Gerrard and his family for suggesting in our issue dated February 2nd that he has been involved in breach of FA rules in secret talks with Real Madrid relating to a possible move this summer," Sport magazine said in a statement.
"We did not check this story with Mr Gerrard before publication, and we now accept that the story is entirely untrue. We have agreed to pay Mr Gerrard a sum in damages and his legal fees."
Gerrard remains contracted to the liverpudlian club.