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Jurgen Klopp slams referees for “personal” decisions against Sadio Mane


Jurgen Klopp has criticised referee Felix Brych for his performance in Liverpool’s defeat to Real Madrid, claiming he treated Sadio Mane unfairly.

Liverpool were well beaten by Real Madrid in the Spanish capital last night, going down 3-1 to leave themselves with a mountain climb for the return fixture in the Champions League quarter-final.

While Klopp acknowledged that his side were not good enough on the night, the Liverpool manager told reporters after the game that he was frustrated with the referee’s performance.

On one occasion Mane appeared to be brought down by Lucas Vazquez outside of the box late on in the first half, but the Spaniard escaped punishment from the referee, which infuriated the Liverpool manager.

“The situation with Sadio, what the ref did tonight I have to say I don’t understand,” Klopp commented.

“For me that was something personal because he dealt with the situation with Sadio, which was a clear foul, like he was a diver or whatever.

“From that moment on whenever Sadio went down he didn’t get anything. That is not right. That is what I told him after the game, that I thought he was unfair with Sadio.

“That doesn’t change anything at all. He (Brych) didn’t lose the game. We were not good enough to get a better result, but in these moments you need just an okay ref. That would have been enough.”

‘I don’t think we deserved to win tonight’

Despite the contentious referee call, Liverpool played far from the standard required in the Champions League in the first half and found themselves trailing by two goals heading into the break.

Klopp admitted that his side were not good enough against the Spanish giants but took some positives from Liverpool’s improved performance in the second half.

“First and foremost I don’t think we deserved to win tonight, we didn’t play good enough and that is my first concern,” Klopp said.

“Especially in the first half we didn’t play good enough football. We conceded the first goal, served the second on a plate (after Trent Alexander-Arnold’s mistake), but that was not the real problem of the game.

“Of course conceding goals is a problem but it is not the problem. The second half we did better, we scored our goal which is the positive of the night and that’s how it is. Did we deserve more than the 3-1? I’m not sure.”

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