Former Premier League referee Mark Clattenburg believes Liverpool were fortunate to beat Crystal Palace 3-1 on Sunday afternoon due to some bad calls made by the officials.
Jurgen Klopp’s side, who closed the gap on league-leaders Manchester City to nine points with their victory at Selhurst Park, took an early lead thanks to Virgil van Dijk’s thumping header from an Andy Robertson corner.
Robertson then notched his second assist later in the first half, chipping the ball to the back post where Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain kept his composure to score past Vicente Guaita.
Clattenburg on Liverpool’s second goal vs Palace
However, Clattenburg claims Liverpool’s second goal should have been disallowed because of Roberto Firmino’s involvement in the goal.
“Crystal Palace have every right to be peeved that Liverpool’s second goal was allowed to stand,” Clattenburg told the Daily Mail.
“When Andy Robertson played the ball into the box, Roberto Firmino was clearly in an offside position. Firmino jumped and made a clear attempt to meet the cross.
“If he hadn’t been there, Palace left back Tyrick Mitchell would have headed clear, so the Liverpool striker was interfering with play.
“Consequently the ball reached Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who scored. VAR should have intervened.”
Clattenburg on Liverpool’s third goal vs Palace
VAR did intervene for the hugely controversial penalty incident that led to Liverpool’s third goal, scored by Fabinho in the 89th minute.
Clattenburg, like many football fans and pundits alike, believes referee Kevin Friend was wrong to award the visitors a spot-kick following a coming together between Diogo Jota and Guaita.
“Kevin Friend should have stood by his decision of ‘no penalty’,” Clattenburg added.
“Once Diogo Jota had pushed the ball past Vicente Guaita, he moved towards the keeper and caused a collision.
“I do not understand why VAR Craig Pawson got involved. There was no clear and obvious error from Friend. The referee saw the incident and did not blow for a foul.
“After being sent to his pitch-side monitor, it was a shame Friend did not back himself and decide his original call was correct.”
What did Vieira and Klopp say after Palace 1-3 Liverpool?
Palace boss Patrick Vieira was particularly incensed by the decision to award Liverpool a penalty.
“I’m really frustrated by the decision,” the Frenchman, who was speaking to BBC Sport, commented.
“I have seen it many times, it is never a penalty. The wrong decision by the referee had a massive impact on the game. You should ask the referee to talk to you and explain the decision himself.
“I think Jota was really smart. Football is all about contact. We have meetings with the referees and they tell us football is about contact and that contact is part of the game. And now they’ve got it wrong.
“When we scored, the game was there for us to go and try and get that draw. But the referee killed our legs today.”
However, Klopp – who handed out beers to Liverpool fans while boarding the team bus back to Merseyside – saw no issue with the decision.
“VAR thought it was a penalty and that is why the referee went to the screen so I am not sure what we are talking about now? Four eyes watched it,” the Reds’ boss said.
Alisson saves Liverpool (Football Terrace)
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