STEVEN GERRARD raised Liverpool's first trophy in six years — with an apology to heartbroken cousin Anthony.
The Reds won a nailbiting Carling Cup final penalty shootout at Wembley after Cardiff substitute Anthony Gerrard dragged his spot-kick wide.
Kop skipper Stevie G said: "I'm delighted to have won a trophy for our fans but I feel for Anthony and for Cardiff. It's always cruel when it goes to penalties but Cardiff were superb.
"Their fans were fantastic and they should be proud of their team."
The Liverpool captain delayed joining his team-mates to celebrate — instead consoling his cousin in emotional scenes on the pitch.
Anthony, a lifelong Liverpool supporter who was with their fans in Athens for the 2007 Champions League final defeat to AC Milan, was too upset to speak afterwards.
But cousin Stevie added: "It was always going to be the case that one of us was going to be sad and one would be celebrating and I have mixed emotions.
"It doesn't matter what I say to him at this time. I know he will be down because I have been there when I scored an own goal against Chelsea in the 2005 final. "I'll be here for him after the game and all the family will be too."
Liverpool won a trophy on penalties for the FIFTH time but so nearly blew it when Gerrard and Charlie Adam missed the first two spot-kicks.
Yet Kenny Miller and Rudy Gestede also fluffed their lines for Cardiff, paving the way for Anthony's horror moment. tevie G said: "We got there by the skin of our teeth again."
Kop boss Kenny Dalglish had his own words of solace for Anthony when he confessed: "It's sad the boy missed it. This is not a nice way to win a cup but we'll take it."
Joe Mason had earlier fired Cardiff ahead before Martin Skrtel prodded in a 60th-minute leveller.
Reds sub Dirk Kuyt then struck in extra time before Ben Turner's close-range equaliser meant penalties. Kuyt was the longest-serving Reds player without a trophy, having arrived months after the 2006 FA Cup win.
The Dutchman, who also fired in a penalty, said: "It was an incredible day."
Steven Gerrard and Charlie Adam missed in the shootout for Liverpool, Kenny Miller, Rudy Gestede and Anthony Gerrard for Cardiff.
It was a first medal in six years with the club for Kuyt, who has now set his sights on a double with Liverpool still involved in the FA Cup.
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