Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish is far from happy with the refereeing in Liverpool’s Premier League matches so far this season and some of the decisions in last weekend’s defeat to Stoke in particular, angered the Liverpool boss.
The reds went down to a controversial 1-0 defeat at the Britannia stadium after Stoke were handed a soft penalty, whereas Liverpool were denied a clear penalty after Rory Delap handled in his own area. Dalglish felt after the game that there have been decisions that have gone against Liverpool in all four of their league matches this season.
Speaking to the BBC after the Stoke match, Dalglish said: “The first four games have had contentious decisions in them and every one has gone against us,”
“If I feel the club is suffering in any shape or form I will need to go the same route other people go and see if we can gain some benefit from that.
“I’ll speak to the owners first and see what they say because the last thing I want to do is for my behaviour to impinge on the club’s success in any way.”
Against Stoke Dalglish certainly had a case for bad refereeing there’s no doubt about that, but he chose to use that to deflect away from the fact that his side squandered several clear chances to equalise and even go on to win the game. Liverpool enjoyed up to 75% possession at times and they had 20 attempts on goal to Stoke’s 3. This shows that Liverpool’s finishing was awful on the day, which had nothing to do with the referee.
Having watched all of Liverpool’s matches this season, I feel Dalglish can only feel aggrieved about a bad refereeing decision in one other game. This was the decision taken by Phil Dowd on the opening fixture of the season between Liverpool and Sunderland, not to send off Kieron Richardson after he brought down Luis Suarez in the penalty area and was clearly the last man. Liverpool went on to draw 1-1, a result which could’ve been different had Sunderland gone down to 10 men.
In the match against Arsenal a decision went in favour of Liverpool as Emmanuel Frimpong was sent off for Arsenal, which ultimately handed the reds all three points. Which leaves only one more match, where Liverpool entertained Bolton. In this particular fixture Liverpool had several appeals for penalties turned down and to be fair to the referee, he was probably correct on all of them as they weren’t that clear. However, the referee in that game somehow decided to wave play on after Bolton goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainan had clearly picked the ball up from a back pass from his defender, which was baffling.
I think after the money Liverpool have spent this summer and in January, the pressure is firmly on Dalglish to succeed and he is starting to get a little frustrated when some things go against his side, as is there is now added pressure for Liverpool to win most matches. Every team has a refereeing decision go for them and against them and it just seems it went against Liverpool last weekend and who knows, they may benefit from a decision by a referee this coming weekend.
The best thing for Kenny to do this week is forget about the referee and concentrate on getting his attacking players to do some work on their finishing in training, so that they don’t get a repeat of the woeful finishing on show against Stoke last Saturday, in this weekend’s clash with Tottenham.
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