‘I don’t know…’ – John Aldridge tries to make sense of Paul Tierney’s display in Liverpool win
John Aldridge was left baffled by the performance of Paul Tierney and his team of officials in Liverpool’s 4-3 win over Tottenham on Sunday.
Both teams had grievances with the referees afterwards, with Oliver Skipp avoiding any sanction for a horrible challenge on Luis Diaz and the Spurs midfielder then taking a kick to the head from Diogo Jota late in the match.
Jurgen Klopp – whose touchline antics have come in for strong criticism (BBC Sport) – also voiced his displeasure with the 42-year-old whistler afterwards, citing previous controversies involving him and the Reds (Sky Sports).
In his column for the Liverpool Echo, Aldridge wrote: “I could not believe some of the decisions made by Paul Tierney during Sunday’s game between Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur.
“It is well known we have experienced problems in matches involving Tierney in the past, and it was no different at the weekend during our win against Spurs.”
The former Reds striker described Skipp’s lunge on Diaz as ‘a terrible tackle’, albeit not deliberate, and Jota’s contact with the Tottenham midfielder as ‘clumsy’.
Aldridge concluded: “I don’t know what the solution is with Tierney, in terms of whether he could be taken off our games for the time being.
“Liverpool could make a complaint, but I don’t know how far you could take that. Jurgen doesn’t really come out with the things he did after the game, so is there an issue of some sort for him to be so emotional about it?”
Although there can be no excusing Klopp for the excessive manner of his angry celebrations towards fourth official John Brooks in the wake of Jota’s winning goal, the Liverpool manager was entitled to feel aggrieved with Tierney and VAR on Sunday.
How none of the officials even called for a foul on Skipp over his awful challenge on Diaz, which would’ve merited a red card, was nothing short of incredulous.
As Aldridge pointed out, this isn’t the first time the Reds have had issues with that particular referee, who neglected to send off Harry Kane for a horrendous foul on Andy Robertson last season and also blew for half-time when Sadio Mane was through on goal against Manchester United two years ago.
We wouldn’t for a minute question Tierney’s integrity, although there’s a worrying pattern of controversies involving him in Liverpool games, and maybe the authorities could do him and us a favour by keeping him away from Reds matches where possible, certainly in the short-term.
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