Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp could be set for a ban and fine for his antics during a match on Sunday. The German coach wildly celebrated his team’s winning goal against Tottenham Hotspur in front of fourth official John Brooks. Following the incident, Klopp collected a pulled hamstring and a yellow card from referee Paul Tierney. Liverpool went on to win the game 4-3 in dramatic fashion.
The Liverpool boss also claimed that Tierney had something “against” his club during his postgame interview. Klopp expressed regret about the incident and clarified his comments about Tierney during a press conference on Tuesday.
Klopp claims referee wanted to send him off
“The whole situation should not have happened at all,” claimed Klopp. “It was out of emotion and anger in that moment. That’s why I celebrated the way I did. We won a game 4-3 in a spectacular manner and the only headlines I created and I really regret that. It’s not necessary and not how it should be.”
“I couldn’t get close to the fourth official, I felt my muscle [after pulling a hamstring]. That’s it,” Klopp continued. “Then Paul Tierney came over to me, I didn’t expect a red. I expected yellow. He said to me: ‘For me it’s red, but because [you taunted the fourth official], it’s yellow.’ I said, ‘Red card for what?'”
“I went in, tried to calm down and couldn’t when I spoke to [the] press. Then I said that what he said was ‘not OK.’ I thought it wasn’t OK because it wasn’t a red but I opened the box with that. I should’ve just said he said it was a red card. Rest was how I felt at that moment.”
England’s Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) have backed Tierney, claiming that the referee “acted in a professional manner.” However, the Premier League has removed Tierney from officiating a top-flight match for this weekend. Then, the FA officially charged Klopp for his comments. The manager has until May 5 to answer the charges.
Coach and official have contentious past
Klopp and Tierney have clashed numerous times in recent seasons. The referee reportedly told Klopp to “get over it” after he admitted to missing a foul on then-Reds midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum in 2020. Klopp also fumed at Tierney during another matchup with Spurs in 2022. Harry Kane avoided getting sent off for a dangerous foul, but Tierney then sent off Andrew Robertson late in the game. Nevertheless, Liverpool has lost just four of 25 total matches in which Tierney has been the match referee.
There are conflicting opinions in England on how to handle Klopp’s latest outburst. Many pundits, including BT Sport commentator Chris Sutton, believe the manager deserves to be handed a touchline ban. However, former Premier League referee Peter Walton thinks a fine will suffice. Walton claimed on Tuesday that Klopp was inappropriate and should be condemned to the public.
An official ruling by the Premier League should be expected soon. Klopp already received a one-match touchline ban earlier this season for berating a referee’s assistant in October.
PHOTO: IMAGO / PA Images
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