Despite Klopp outburst, Mane incident not a penalty says former PGMOL chief Keith Hackett

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In the heat of the Premier League battle between Southampton and Liverpool, the Reds clearly felt that they were denied a couple of decent penalty shouts.

Jurgen Klopp even, ill-advisedly, compared the amount of penalties that Man United get given compared to themselves in his post-match press conference.

“(Man United) had more penalties in two years than I had in five-and-a-half years,” he said, cited by Sky Sports.

“If anybody ever again will say Sadio Mane is a ‘diver’, it’s the biggest joke in the world.

“This boy tries to stay on his feet with all he has. In two situations… other teams will get a penalty for it, let me say it like this. Then the handball, I don’t know who will explain that to me.”

However, former PGMOL chief, Keith Hackett, has suggested that Andre Marriner and the VAR got things exactly right during the Monday night fixture.

“On the Mane incident, I agree with Jamie Carragher’s assessment,” he told CaughtOffside.

“First view I am saying penalty kick. When you review the angle of the defenders challenge, it is not across Mane and contact is Mane catching the defender with his own trailing leg.

“We are seeing over the holiday period a definite shift by the VAR operation. They are beginning to hold up the ‘clear and obvious’ criteria, and that is why there was no involvement.”

It would be odd if Liverpool wanted to start playing the victims now that they’re not getting the rub of the green.

Certain decisions have never been seen as a problem before, but continued poor performances from the Reds are now seeing the excuses being trotted out and, as always, it’s the officials that are the easy targets.

VAR has a lot to answer for, of course, but on this occasion it appears that things worked in perfect harmony.

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