Mark Clattenburg reviews the calls Paul Tierney made during Liverpool versus Spurs
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Mark Clattenburg reviews the calls Paul Tierney made during Liverpool versus Spurs

Liverpool’s 2-2 draw with Spurs was fiercely contested. But ultimately it was decided by shocking officiating from the referees and Jurgen Klopp was not happy.

“I have no problems with referees – only you,” Klopp was overheard saying to Paul Tierney after the game. The referee made a number for obvious errors and displayed a frustrating lack of consistency.

It benefitted Spurs and Dele Alli should have received three yellow cards for repeated bookable offences, while Harry Kane should have been sent off. His tackle on Andy Robertson was one of the most obvious red card challenges, yet Tierney quickly showed a yellow card and VAR made no attempt to instruct the official to review it.

Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

However, when Robertson kicked Emerson Royal, they wasted no time in reviewing the incident and showing the Scotsman his marching orders. I totally understand the decision to send Robbo off. After all, his challenge on Royal was out of line and over the top. But Kane’s was reckless and put the Liverpool full-back’s career on the line.

Former Premier League referee Mark Clattenburg reviewed the five biggest referee talking points in the game in what was the most action-packed and contentious fixture of the season so far.

Harry Kane’s challenge on Andy Robertson

“If Harry Kane’s lunge on Andy Robertson isn’t a red card then I’m not sure what is. The tackle is high, it’s above the ankle, studs are showing and it’s late. It didn’t have a good look to it from any angle. 

“Andy Robertson sees the challenge coming from Harry Kane. He knows if he leaves his leg planted then there’s a good chance he’ll be getting stretchered out of the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and spending Christmas in a moon boot. 

“By jumping out of the way, Robertson avoids serious damage. Kane gets away with his lunge as referee Paul Tierney shows only a yellow, with VAR Chris Kavanagh deciding it was not a clear and obvious error. I’d have shown Kane red. 

“Just because you’re England captain doesn’t mean you have any special leeway to commit bad challenges. I never treated important English internationals any different. 

“No referee should take that into account.”

Emerson Royal’s foul on Diogo Jota in the box

“This should have resulted in a penalty for Liverpool. Emerson Royal barges into the back of Diogo Jota and gets nothing of the ball. 

“The covering defender meant Tottenham wouldn’t have been reduced to 10 men but Liverpool should have had a penalty.”

Dele Alli’s dive

“Soft. Dele Alli went down wanting a penalty after sensing Trent Alexander-Arnold behind him. Watching it back, it looks more like a dive. 

“Alli’s legs are giving way before there’s any substantial contact on him. Tierney had a great view of this incident from behind and was right to wave play on.”

Mohamed Salah’s handball leading to Robertson’s goal

“Did Mohamed Salah handle the ball? Yes, clearly, but that doesn’t matter. 

“The rules changed as of this season to say that even if an accidental handball immediately precedes another player scoring, the goal will stand. 

“It would only have been disallowed had it been Salah scoring himself. Last season this header by Robertson wouldn’t have stood because of what happened in the build-up. But the latest laws mean this had to stand.”

Andy Robertson’s red card challenge on Emerson Royal

“It was a fierce game at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, full of hot-blooded tackles, and this was a particularly angry challenge by Robertson on Royal. 

“It was worthy of a red, but then Kane’s indiscretion earlier in the game was worse. Where’s the consistency? 

“How can VAR tell Tierney to go look at this incident but not the one involving Kane?”

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