Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard donates £96,000 to Hillsborough group

Gerrard donates £96k to Hillsborough group
© Getty Images
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard donates £96,000 to the Hillsborough Family Support Group ahead of tonight's crucial Merseyside derby.

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has donated £96,000 to the Hillsborough Family Support Group.

The midfielder lost his 10-year-old cousin Jon-Paul Gilhooley in the 1989 tragedy, which claimed the lives of 96 Liverpool fans at the Hillsborough ground during an FA Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest.

The England skipper has opted to make the donation ahead of tonight's Merseyside derby against local rivals Everton at Anfield.

"It's to send a message of togetherness out as well," BBC News quotes Gerrard as saying.

"I know there's a bit of banter in the stands when the game's going on but, for me, the Everton fans have been superb since Hillsborough.

"I think it's good timing to send this out now, just before the Merseyside derby, but also there's a huge thank you from not just myself, but from all the Liverpudlians and all the help and support the Everton fans have given us with this."

Fresh inquests into the disaster are due to begin in March after the original "accidental" verdict was dismissed.

Romelu Lukaku of Everton scores his team's third goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Everton and Liverpool at Goodison Park on November 23, 2013
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