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Match commander David Duckenfield "terribly sorry" to Hillsborough families

Former match commander David Duckenfield says that he is "terribly sorry" to the families of the 96 Liverpool fans who died in the Hillsborough tragedy.

Former chief superintendent David Duckenfield has issued an apology to the families of the 96 Liverpool fans who died in the 1989 Hillsborough disaster.

Duckenfield, who was the match commander on the day of the FA Cup semi-final between the Reds and Nottingham Forest, has been giving evidence at the inquest in Warrington.

Earlier this week, Duckenfield admitted that, while at the time he claimed that fans had forced through the gate to the Leppings Lane end where the crush took place, in truth he had ordered the gate to be opened.

Today, Duckenfield told the inquest: "I hope you understand this - I hoped it would go away, but then two years ago, I had to force myself to look at matters and as a result, I could only do so with the assistance of doctors.

"I dug my head in the sand, didn't admit things to myself, but I am now very much older, very much wiser, and very much more understanding of the events of the day and have decided to tell the whole truth.

"To the families, I say this, I am terribly sorry. It has now dawned on me what it means to you, and I am dreadfully sorry."

The inquest will resume on Monday.

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A Liverpool football club supporter looks at floral tributes and memorabilia ahead of a memorial service to mark the twentieth anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster at Anfield in Liverpool, north-west England on April 15, 2009
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