Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp could face disciplinary action after accusing the referee in Sunday’s dramatic 4-3 win over Tottenham of bearing a grudge against his team.
Diogo Jota’s stoppage-time strike sealed victory at Anfield, just 99 seconds after Spurs thought Richarlison’s first Premier League goal for the club had rescued a point after the visitors had been 3-0 behind.
Klopp, however, was so incensed by the officiating throughout the match that he charged down the touchline to celebrate wildly in front of fourth official John Brooks — and injured himself in the process.
Klopp then lambasted referee Paul Tierney.
“We have our history with Tierney, I really don’t know what he has against us, he has said there is no problem but that cannot be true,” Klopp told Sky Sports.
“How he looks at me, I don’t understand it. My celebration was unnecessary, but what he said to me when he gave me the yellow card is not OK.”
The German boss, asked what Tierney had said, replied: “I will not say anything about it. The refs don’t say what is said so I don’t say what is said.”
That did not stop Klopp from going on to reference Tierney’s performance during Liverpool’s 2-2 draw away to Spurs last season.
“Paul Tierney didn’t give Harry Kane a red card but Robbo (Liverpool’s Andy Robertson) got a red card. It was not the first time, there are so many things.”
The Professional Game Match Officials Limited said in a statement that, having checked audio of the game, Tierney “acted in a professional manner”.
“We strongly refute any suggestion that Tierney’s actions were improper,” the statement added.
Earlier, Klopp explained his touchline antics following Jota’s winning goal by saying: “Of course, we are emotional in these moments. It’s difficult. It is not OK, we shouldn’t do that.
“I didn’t say a bad word to the fourth official — not at all — but I pulled my hamstring probably in that moment so, fair enough, I’m already punished.”
Tottenham’s Ryan Mason was also unhappy with the officials, particularly the VAR, following a defeat that left Spurs sixth in the table, two points behind Liverpool.
The interim head coach wanted to know why Jota was still on the pitch after a head-high challenge on Oliver Skipp only led to a yellow card.
“I would like an explanation and a reason why it wasn’t (a red card),” said Mason. “I can understand referees on the pitch missing it.”
He added: “We want the VAR to help the official on the pitch at that moment, but an experienced referee and VAR haven’t given it… It was a big decision, a crucial decision and one you can’t really miss.”