Sunday 19 August 2018

Jurgen Klopp hits out at referee Craig Pawson and Jose Mourinho snaps back at his critics after United beat Liverpool

Referee Craig Pawson speaks to Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp during the Premier League match at Old Trafford
Referee Craig Pawson speaks to Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp during the Premier League match at Old Trafford
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp hit out at referee Craig Pawson after he claimed his side were denied a clear penalty in a 2-1 defeat against Manchester United at Old Trafford.

Two first half goals from Marcus Rashford proved to be the difference between the two sides, with Liverpool’s second half fight back coming up short despite a frantic finish to the game that included six minutes of added time.

Yet Klopp was fuming after the game as he was convinced Sadio Mane should have been awarded a penalty after he tangled with Marouane Fellaini in the box, with Liverpool also have further penalty appeals waved away.

“I think it was a clear penalty between Fellaini on Mane. I think everyone agrees it was a penalty but that doesn’t help us now,” stated Klopp.

“It was 2-0 down of course - not a good idea against Manchester United. Long balls to (Romelu) Lukaku and second situations. Lukaku is one of the best strikers in the world, we needed to be around to pick up the ball, we were not and Rashford could use the situation twice.

“We had opportunities to shoot from distance but we were not good enough, we did not score and had to chase the game in the second half. We did that, scored one and I think everyone agrees it was a penalty but that doesn’t help us now.

“We chased the game in the second half and caused them problems but this is a result game and they have the result and we don’t. I think at least one point would have been absolutely fair for us.”

Klopp also criticised his defenders, as he insisted they should have been stronger to stop both of Rahsford’s goals. “We have to defend these situations better, protect these situations better. You can always lose a header against Lukaku. We didn’t win the second balls,” he moaned.

“When Rashford cuts in we need to be there. We weren’t. We had a lot of okay momennts, could have finished a bit better. Didn’t score at the end of the first half and second half we chased the game. In the end, we lose the game and that’s all that matters.”

Meanwhile United manager Jose Mourinho hit back at suggestions his side were fortune to collect all three points after Liverpool dominated long periods of the game at Old Trafford.

“You can be in control of the game without the ball. Against Liverpool you can be in trouble when you have the ball, it allows them to do what they do better.

“We were quite aggressive in the first half, we wanted to have control of the game, spaces for transition and try to exploit - not weaknesses - but points where the opponent is not so good.

“The second half it was not our intention to be as defensive as we were. Liverpool pushed us back but I don’t remember the chances that need David de Gea to make the goal safe. I don’t remember a dangerous situation to our goal. It was control by them having the ball and control by us without the ball. I think we deserved the three points.

“We won and I don’t care what people say. three points, very important victory, the boys are happy, I’m happy. If people say we didn’t deserve to win this game, I don’t care. Three points. Move on.”

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