‘We have history’: Jurgen Klopp risks FA wrath with criticism of referee Paul Tierney

Jurgen Klopp was furious with the referee Paul Tierney (PA)
Jurgen Klopp was furious with the referee Paul Tierney (PA)
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Jurgen Klopp risked an FA charge after Liverpool’s 4-3 win over Tottenham for suggesting that referee Paul Tierney has something against his club.

The German was booked for rushing to celebrate Diogo Jota’s injury-time winner in the face of fourth official John Brooks, hurting his hamstring in the process.

Klopp said it was a human emotion and explained that he was annoyed that Tierney had not awarded Liverpool a free kick for a challenge on Mohamed Salah, shortly before Tottenham’s 93rd-minute equaliser.

But he appeared to imply that Tierney is biased against Liverpool, saying: “How they can not give a foul on Mohamed Salah? We have our history with Tierney, I really don’t know what he has against us. He has said there is no problems but that cannot be true.

“How he looks at me, I don’t understand it. In England nobody has to clarify these situations, it’s really tricky and hard to understand. My celebration was unnecessary, which is fair but what he said to me when he gave me the yellow card is not OK.

“Of course we are emotional in these moments. It’s difficult. It is not OK we shouldn’t do that, yes, we are role models, all clear. But before you are a role model, you’re a human being and that happens in the moment.

“But I didn’t say a bad word to the fourth official – not at all – and he wouldn’t have deserved it anyway because he didn’t do anything wrong but I turned around to the fourth official, celebrated in that direction and pulled my hamstring probably in that moment. So fair enough, all good. I’m already punished, I got a yellow card on top of that, I think he thought I should have got a different punishment but because of the fourth official, it was a yellow card. That’s it. We have to ask Mr Tierney what is going on.”

Klopp’s issues with Tierney date back to a 2-2 draw with Tottenham in 2021 and he added: “Paul Tierney gave us, in a season which was quite important, he didn’t give Harry Kane a red card. I love Harry Kane, what a player, today again – my god – he’s pretty much unplayable. That day, he didn’t get a red card but Robbo got a red card. We drew 2-2 – you might remember it…”

Klopp described his hamstring problem as: “Bad enough. So fair punishment for behaving not the right away. That’s it. I have pain for a few days, Mr Tierney not.”

Jurgen Klopp appears to clutch his hamstring after the final whistle (PA)
Jurgen Klopp appears to clutch his hamstring after the final whistle (PA)

Tottenham interim manager Ryan Mason said that Jota should have been sent off for a high boot into the face of Spurs midfielder Oliver Skipp.

He said: “I would like an explanation and a reason why it wasn’t [a red card]. I can understand referees and officials on the pitch missing it even though my feeling was an instant red card because when your foot is studs showing and you’re five and a half feet off the ground and make contact with a player’s head and draw blood, and there is a gash, I think it ticks all the boxes.

“Probably more so an experienced referee in the VAR room, you want him to help the official on the pitch in that moment. Listen, it’s decided the game because that player on the pitch shouldn’t have been on there at the end.”

However, Klopp felt Skipp himself should have been dismissed before then for a first-half foul, adding: “Diogo was not at all intentional. I heard from a colleague of yours that Skipp shouldn’t be on the pitch because of a challenge on Luis Diaz earlier in the game.”