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‘I was screaming’ – Peter Crouch fumes over ‘blatant’ incident in Liverpool’s Europa League exit

In Europe
April 19, 2024
(Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images)

Ex-Liverpool striker Peter Crouch criticized the referee over one key decision against Atalanta -Credit:(Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

Ex-Liverpool striker Peter Crouch was left in disbelief during his former club’s Europa League quarter-final exit to Atalanta on Thursday night. Despite Liverpool clinching a 1-0 victory in Bergamo, it wasn’t enough to compensate for the three-goal shortfall from the first leg at Anfield, with the team seemingly running out of steam towards the end.

The match could have swung in favor of Jürgen Klopp’s men if Atalanta defender Isak Hien had been sent off. In the first half, Mohamed Salah sent a ball towards Luis Díaz, who seemed poised for a clear run on goal, until Hien deflected the ball with his hand.

The incident sparked vehement protests from the Liverpool squad. However, the referee opted for a yellow card instead of a red.

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Crouch expressed his frustration while on TNT Sports, saying: “I was screaming for a red card straightaway. You can see he leans into the ball. It’s a definite move of the arm. I think Díaz is going in here, I think he takes a touch across him.

“I think that should be a red card. He leans right into it. I don’t think the player on the right is covering him. I can see why he’s not given it because the defender is coming across to cover and I think he thinks he might get there. But he’s so good, Díaz, at taking it across defenders.”

Crouch reiterated his thoughts post-match, saying: “I think it could have been [a red card]. I think Díaz has got the presence of mind to go across the defender.

“How does the referee know where he’s going to have his touch? Because I think he takes this touch on the half-volley across the defender and then he’s in on goal. And that is a blatant handball. He is I believe going through one-on-one with the goalkeeper so yes I think it should have been red.”

After being knocked out of Europe, Liverpool must now regroup as it continues its Premier League title chase this weekend at Craven Cottage against Fulham. Should Liverpool emerge victorious and Arsenal stumble at Wolves, Klopp’s men could find themselves at the summit of the league again

Manchester City is in FA Cup semi-final action this weekend and Liverpool actually plays twice before Pep Guardiola’s men return to league action. The Reds take on Everton in the Merseyside derby at Goodison Park on Wednesday.

Liverpool.com says: It was a controversial moment in the tie that would have really swung it in Liverpool’s favor. The Reds were some way out of goal but such is Díaz’s pace, you would have fancied him to run clear. Liverpool would have then played for over 45 minutes against 10 men and been better placed to mount a comeback.

* An AI tool was used to add an extra layer to the editing process for this story. You can read the original story in the Daily Mirror by clicking here.

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