Monday 10 December 2018

Jurgen Klopp furious with Neymar playacting: PSG antics made Liverpool 'look like butchers'


Jurgen Klopp was not happy with Neymar's histrionics
Jurgen Klopp was not happy with Neymar's histrionics
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp remonstrates with referee Szymon Marciniak in Paris last night. Photo: Reuters/Andrew Boyers

Jack Pitt-Brooke

Jurgen Klopp accused Paris St Germain of transforming Liverpool into a team of ‘butchers’ with their constant play-acting.

Klopp singled out Neymar as the biggest culprit as Liverpool received six bookings in a 2-1 defeat, suggesting Polish referee Szymon Marciniak should have taken sterner action.

“The number of interruptions in the game was not cool,” said Klopp.

“We have won the fair play league twice in England but we looked like butchers when you see the yellow cards we had.

“It was clever of PSG, of Neymar - especially him - but a lot of players went down like it was serious and we were not that calm.

 “If the referee lets that happen you have to deal with that as a team.”

Asked what more the officials could have done, Klopp replied: “I could say 500,00 things. You can give yellow cards for everything. You act like you die and the next minute get up again? It is not sportsman-like behaviour. It is hectic and was not football anymore. I do not say Paris did not deserve (to win). I do not expect help from a referee, only to calm these things down. It does not happen often, the crowd is up and we were not calm enough. Even Joe Gomez got a yellow card, the nicest boy on the planet, and he was close to a red.”

Klopp also felt one of the game’s most influential players, Marco Verratti, deserved a red card for a challenge on Gomez.

“Everyone has eyes and saw it and can write it but you tell me it is only a story if I say it? I don’t believe that,” said Klopp.

“For me it is a red card, yes, but then we have a story and it looks like I am a bad loser. I had a very good view and it was for sure not the same colour and as those other 500 yellow cards.”

Thomas Tuchel, the PSG coach, was unimpressed by his rival’s observations.

“I don't feel it is such a big issue,” said Tuchel.

“We suffered a lot of fouls. You don't have to commit a lot of fouls, especially if you are 1-0 down. If you are 1-0 down then don't commit 10 fouls in the next 10 minutes. When I lose a big game I am angry and I will talk about other stuff to bring attention away from my team, also. I hear Jurgen has his opinion and that's fine. I'm talking about the game.”

After four successive away defeats in the Champions League for the first time, Liverpool must now defeat Napoli by two goals at Anfield to be sure of qualification.

“It does not feel good. It was an important game for us,” said Klopp.

“We need Anfield again and a pretty special atmosphere, but Napoli is a really strong side. We have to make a special night of it. If we win with the right result we are still in the Champions League.”

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