Belfast Telegraph

Kane took a dive, raps van Dijk

Spurs’ Harry Kane goes down for disputed penalty, which he missed, but scored a later one to earn a 2-2 draw at Liverpool
Spurs’ Harry Kane goes down for disputed penalty, which he missed, but scored a later one to earn a 2-2 draw at Liverpool

By Carl Markham

Liverpool’s club-record signing Virgil van Dijk believes Harry Kane dived to win a penalty in yesterday’s 2-2 draw at Anfield.

Referee Jon Moss ruled Tottenham’s England international had been brought down by the slightest of touches from goalkeeper Loris Karius after being controversially allowed to play on despite being in an offside position.

Kane missed the penalty but redeemed himself from the spot with an equaliser deep into added time after Van Dijk was adjudged to have fouled Erik Lamela.

However, the world’s most expensive defender, at £75m, thinks Kane was lucky to get the first award, especially after Dele Alli had been booked for diving in the box moments earlier — his third such transgression since his debut in 2015-16.

“I think it is a dive,” said Van Dijk. “You see him (Kane) diving clearly and no-one is talking about it but I think it is a dive.”

The Dutchman added: “There is a lot of discussion about whether it is offside, yes or no, but I think it was offside as well.

“You could just see him making that dive. The referee made his decision together with the linesman. It was good for us that it got saved.”

Asked whether he thought Kane should be retrospectively punished the Holland international added: “That is not something for me.

“I thought it was a dive that is my opinion and the referee thought it was not offside and no dive and he gave a pen. Good for us that we saved it.”

Van Dijk was also unhappy with the award of the second penalty when Lamela went down as the Dutchman tried to clear the ball.

“I saw him coming in the end and I try and hold my leg in, he just pulled his body in front of the ball and he goes down,” he explained.

“The ref said play on and I was very disappointed that the linesman said otherwise. I don’t think that is a penalty, same with the first one. That is also clearly not a penalty.”

Angry Reds manager Jurgen Klopp (right) admitted he would get the “biggest fine in world football” if he gave his honest opinion on the spot-kick awards.

He fumed: “Obviously I can’t change anything so what’s my job now? To create headlines? To be punished? To pay a fine?

“If I say what I think, I would pay the biggest fine in world football.

“That makes absolutely no sense. I have no problem with people making mistakes but if you don’t see the situation, then step aside.

“I thought for the first penalty they (Moss and his assistant) were discussing. I didn’t see Jon Moss asking anything.

“At the end I’ve learned something new and now people will think I know nothing about football because I thought it was offside.

“But the second one, it’s not about who is where. In the 93rd minute you whistle a penalty when you are 100 per cent sure.

“It’s clear in these situations the opposition wants to go down, wants to cause these type of problems, but we have to accept it, I can’t change it. But it’s really hard to get.”

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino hailed Kane as the England international brought up 100 Premier League goals with his successful penalty.

“He’s one of the best strikers. He can miss a penalty or a chance but he has the personality,” said the Argentinian.

“To score 100 Premier League goals, it is because you have big, big balls.”

Pochettino understandably had a very different view to his counterpart on the two penalties and felt Moss had a good game.

“I congratulated him, to show the character that they (officials) showed in this moment,” he added.

“It was difficult to know if they were right at this moment and then in the dressing room I confirmed they were right in every single decision.”

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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