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Jurgen Klopp Criticizes Referee, VAR Decisions In Arsenal Defeat

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has been quick to criticize decisions that went against his side in Sunday’s 3-2 defeat to Arsenal in the Premier League.

According to Sports reports,
the game was not without controversy from the first minute, as Gabriel Martinelli broke the deadlock early doors, but a technical error meant that the VAR could not intervene on a possible offside against Bukayo Saka.

Liverpool were then denied a penalty when the ball struck Gabriel Magalhaes on the arm, much to the surprise of supporters, and Saka then converted the game-winning spot kick after Thiago Alcantara’s foul on Gabriel Jesus.

Footage has since showed that the ball deflected onto Gabriel’s hand from his chest in the Liverpool penalty incident, but Klopp was still left less than impressed by calls from Michael Oliver and those at Stockley Park.

“When you look at the Arsenal game, I know people don’t want to hear that, but I think on Sky Sports [in] the Ref Watch, when Mr Dermot [Gallagher] twice says the decision was wrong by the best English referee, Michael Oliver,” Klopp told reporters ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Rangers.

“One penalty was no penalty because before the season we had a big meeting with the refs and they said no soft penalties anymore… and it was a penalty we got [given against us].

“Then we saw this season already which kind of situations we’ve had for handball and there were penalties with exactly the same situation, but not in this game. But Mr Dermot, not to forget, thought yes, this was a penalty.

“The first goal, how I heard now, of Arsenal was pretty likely offside – we just cannot find out because a camera was not there or the angle or whatever. I don’t know exactly the reason, but when I saw the pictures I thought it was obvious that Saka came back from an offside position.

“So what did we miss in this specific game? Just the right ref decisions would have been helpful, to be 100 per cent honest, and then we can judge the game new.”

Liverpool can move to within one point of qualification for the knockout stages of the Champions League at Ibrox, with Klopp’s side three points clear of Ajax in second place and three adrift of leaders Napoli.

The Reds will be forced into several alterations for the meeting with Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s side, as Luis Diaz, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joel Matip all picked up injuries against Arsenal.

Diaz’s knee problem will keep him sidelined until after the World Cup, while Alexander-Arnold and Matip are facing two weeks out with ankle and calf problems respectively.

On a brighter note, Andy Robertson will be back at Klopp’s disposal against Rangers, but the likes of Arthur, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Naby Keita and Curtis Jones all remain sidelined.

“Robbo is in the squad; Curtis not, Ox not, Naby not. That’s it. It’s important the boys [are] coming back but it is not that you are back, train twice with the team and then here we go. It’s not like this,” Klopp added.

The Liverpool boss also warned fans not to expect his side to “fly” at Ibrox, but they would “fight” until the end to return to winning ways against Group A’s basement side.

“Until somebody tells us the fight is over, that’s all we can promise. Yes, it didn’t become easier since Sunday because of the injuries but the team I saw [on Tuesday] in training I liked a lot. So, let’s give it a go,” Klopp said.

Following Wednesday’s game, Liverpool will have three days to recover before a blockbuster Premier League showdown with Manchester City in Sunday’s Premier League clash at Anfield.

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