West Ham’s fine season continued on Sunday afternoon when the Hammers saw off Liverpool 3-2 at home and moved above Jurgen Klopp’s team and into the top three.
The win capped off an unbeaten run of seven matches in 22 days between the October and November international windows that saw the Hammers qualify for the Europa League knockout stages, the quarter-final of the Carabao Cup and move from ninth to third in the league table.
Along the way, West Ham ended Liverpool’s 25 match unbeaten run and inflicted their first Premier League loss on the Reds since March. David Moyes’ team also ended Manchester City’s five-year dominance of the Carabao Cup. Pep Guardiola’s team had not been knocked out of the tournament since October 26, 2016, five years and one day later the Hammers did what so many other teams had failed to do and ended the longest winning run in the history of the tournament.
Following the two matches at the London Stadium, the Liverpool and Manchester City managers attended a press conference with Klopp and Guardiola giving very different reactions to defeat.
Klopp claimed he was not making excuses before running through a list of excuses while Guardiola was full of praise for his opponents and their manager.
“Congratulations to West Ham for their qualification,” said the City boss.
“One of the toughest games we played at home last season was against them. They are doing well in the Premier League and in the Europa League and now in the Carabao Cup quarter-finals. Fantastic team and fantastic manager.”
Klopp on the other hand had little by way of praise for West Ham other than a condescending: “Obviously West Ham played really good stuff this season but today it was like the old West Ham sitting deep, going for set pieces and counterattacks.” Klopp failed to mention 50 percent of his team’s goals at the London Stadium came from set-pieces and a point was theirs for the taking had Sadio Mane not missed from six yards out from a, you guessed it, a set-piece.
Instead, the German decided to concentrate on the wrongs he felt Liverpool were on the end of due to poor refereeing and a VAR who was ‘hiding’.
“The referee made it easy for himself and let VAR look and he said, ‘goal’ which is strange,” Klopp said. “It was a clear foul as the arm from Ogbonna was there. So how can he catch it? That makes no sense. You need normal decisions from a referee and he did not do that.”
Klopp believes some referees were using VAR to make the decisions for them. “Not all refs, but he [Craig Pawson] does,” he said. “He definitely did that. There are too many things where it is, ‘Let’s see what VAR is saying’ and we have a problem because whoever is in the VAR hides being the ‘clear and obvious’ phrase. That means two people are hiding and we have the wrong decisions.”
The Liverpool manager was also furious that Aaron Cresswell did not receive a red card for a tackle on Jordan Henderson despite the majority of pundits and former referees agreeing it was not a sending off.
“It is a clear red card,” Klopp said. “I didn’t know what the referee would say now, but in the game he looked confident his decisions were correct. [These were] two situations which were influential.”
Despite having a perfect view of the two incidents at either end of the field, miraculously Klopp did not see the incident that led up to Trent Alexander-Arnold’s free-kick with the manager claiming, “I did not see it,” when questioned whether Mohamed Salah had dived to win the free-kick.
Moyes on the other hand did see the incident and described it as “soft.”
Source by Football London