Belfast Telegraph

Monday 21 April 2014

Liverpool manager Dalglish refuses to blame ref

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish refused to criticise referee Mike Jones' decision to send off two of his players in yesterday's defeat at White Hart Lane.

Earlier this week, Dalglish met with referees chief Mike Riley after the Scot felt aggrieved that his team had not been awarded two penalties in last Saturday's 1-0 defeat at Stoke.

Dalglish fumed at Jones yesterday afternoon when he argued with him at half-time for booking Luis Suarez for dissent.

The official's decision to send off Charlie Adam and Martin Skrtel swung the game in Tottenham's favour although both looked correct calls.

Adam was sent off after 32 minutes for two bookings — the second a studs-up tackle on Scott Parker —and Skrtel followed in the second half when he earned a second yellow for hacking Gareth Bale down from behind just inside the Liverpool half.

The Scot insisted after his meeting with Riley that he and his team would not criticise match officials and he held true to his word.

“It's better to just leave it,” Dalglish said when asked about the red cards.

“We will just stick to (talking about) what we can dictate. We cannot dictate interpretation (of the rules) in any way, shape or form. It's best left unsaid because it takes away from a magnificent performance by Tottenham.

“You can talk about anyone being undisciplined but we have a very good record for discipline.

“My players did not surround the referee to complain at the decisions. That means we don't have a disciplinary problem.”

Luka Modric's brilliant seventh-minute strike — his first of the season after a summer of speculation concerning his future— put Spurs on their way to victory.

From there, they never looked back and the game was eventually sealed by Jermain Defoe's low drive and Emmanuel Adebayor's brace — the second of which was a well-timed volley in added time.

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp thought Adam's dismissal was harsh, but said he had no problem with Jones' decision to send off Skrtel, who had a torrid time trying to handle Bale.

“The right-back had problems with Gareth, I have no sympathy for him. If you already have a yellow you don't lift a guy up on the halfway line,” Redknapp said.

“I don't know whether Charlie Adam had his eye on the ball or Scott, but I can't see him trying to do him. He's not that kind of lad.”

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