Footage may explain Klopp’s ‘wrestling’ accusations after Liverpool 2-0 Burnley


Jurgen Klopp believes the Premier League is in danger of “going backwards” unless match officials do more to protect players this season.

The Liverpool boss, who was speaking after his side’s 2-0 victory over Burnley at Anfield on Saturday, suggested some rule changes are better suited to “wrestling”.

Klopp was unhappy with a number of Burnley challenges that he felt crossed the line but went unpunished

“We always had to be ready for a proper fight and we were,” Klopp told BT Sport, per Sky Sports.

“You saw these challenges with [Ashley] Barnes and [Chris] Wood and Virgil [van Dijk] and Joel [Matip].

“I’m not 100 per cent sure if [officials] are going in the right direction with these decisions. It’s like we’re going 10 to 15 years backwards. The rules are like they are, but you cannot defend these situations. That’s how it makes the game really tricky.

“The message now is let the game flow, but nobody exactly knows what that means.

“I like decisions that favour the offensive team, that’s fine. But we have to stick to protecting the players. We cannot deny that. If you like that sort of thing, watch wrestling.”

“If you like that, watch wrestling.”

Jürgen Klopp getting the #SummerSlam plug in. Love to see it.

— WWE on BT Sport (@btsportwwe) August 21, 2021

MOTD: Klopp’s ‘wrestling’ rant mind games?

Match of the Day pundits Jermaine Jenas and Danny Murphy failed to spot anything during the 90 minutes to support Klopp’s ‘wrestling’ accusations. 

What do you think? Is Jurgen Klopp playing mind games? 🤔

📲 Watch #MOTD LIVE:

— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) August 21, 2021

Footage may support Klopp’s ‘wresting’ claims

However, two clips are currently being shared by Liverpool fans on Twitter which may explain why Klopp made these claims during his post-match interview.

The first example shows Ashley Barnes dragging Joel Matip to the floor… 

When Klopp was talking about wrestling after the game, I think this move from Ashley “Bulldozer” Barnes might have been fresh in his mind. Not interested in the ball, jumps in two-footed and drags Matip to the floor. No free kick. 🙃

— Biggies Malls 2.0 (@Biggies_MaIIs) August 21, 2021

And the other shows Johann Gudmundsson throwing Diogo Jota to the ground… 

That pick up/throw down on Jota was worse.
Not that that wasn’t really pathetic.

— The Notorious James Thrillner 🌎 (@MichiganLfc) August 21, 2021

Remarkably, referee Mike Dean didn’t hand out a single yellow card during the match.

There will be many football fans who are delighted to see that referees are waving play-on more than usual, but Klopp clearly isn’t in favour of the levels of leniency currently on display.