Rod Stewart arrives in Las Vegas with his son Sean
Football superfan Sir Rod Stewart has revealed that his love of the beautiful game has had some not so beautiful consequences.
The 78-year-old superstar regularly used to kick signed balls into the crowd for fans – usually during his song Maggie May.
Unfortunately, there were unexpected consequences to the stunt.
“I got one or two lawsuits,” he revealed to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Sir Rod was sued in 2014 by Mostafa Kashe, who filed a lawsuit in Clark County, Las Vegas, claiming damages of more than £6,000.
This followed an incident at a gig at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas in October 2012, in which he claimed his nose was broken.
In 2019 a man called Glen Garofano filed a similar complaint in Clark County District Court.
In it he alleged that he was knocked down and injured as other concertgoers attempted to retrieve a soccer ball that Stewart sent into the crowd during a show in the Colosseum at Caesars Palace in 2017.
He alleged that he suffered injuries to his back, groin and legs, and was seeking damages of more than $15,000, plus attorney fees.
Despite this he continued the gimmick until last year but has now stopped the stunt after accidentally hurting a friend during a concert last year.
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“When I got to the Hollywood Bowl last year, a dear friend who came all the way over to see me got smashed in the face with a ball,” he confessed.
“It broke his glasses. He’s still having operations. It was very upsetting for both of us.”
Despite the tragedy Rod joked that he later told his friend: “You’ve got to keep your eye on the ball in all sports, mate.”
Rather than kicking the balls out himself, he’s now found a compromise.
He told the publication he would now allow only the female members of his band to throw out a few balls, adding: “They’re not going to hurt anybody.”
Rod’s football gimmick was so popular that he admitted people were getting mugged outside his gigs.
“People went mad. They would walk out with a football and get mugged outside as they’re worth a lot of money.
“It is extraordinary the lengths people will go to get a hold of a football,” he revealed.
The singer, married to Penny Lancaster, 52, is currently performing a short residency in Las Vegas until May 15.
He will return to the strip at the end of the year for further shows.
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