Everton boss Frank Lampard claimed opposition sides would never be given the “stonewall” penalty Jamie Carragher felt his team deserved in their 2-0 defeat at Liverpool.
Anthony Gordon, who had earlier been booked for diving by referee Stuart Attwell, appeared to be knocked to the ground by Liverpool defender Joel Matip as the two chased down a ball behind the home defence with the game goalless at Anfield.
Attwell waved away appeals for a spot-kick from the 21-year-old with VAR also declining to intervene, a decision Carragher told Sky Sports denied Everton a clear penalty – but one which he added may have been influenced by the forward’s earlier simulation.
“He’s got to be careful Anthony Gordon, he’s a local player and I know some of his friends and family,” Carragher said. “He’s a great player and lad, one of the best on the pitch today.
“He caused Liverpool massive problems, it’s not the first one in the first half, he’s just got to be careful of that. It’ll definitely be in referees’ heads and maybe he hasn’t got what he’s deserved because of a few incidents in three or four other games. But that said, it’s a stonewall penalty.”
It was a viewpoint shared by Graeme Souness, who said Liverpool’s players would have been reminding Attwell of Gordon’s earlier misdemeanour as he considered whether to give the penalty or not.
He said: “In the first half, the young boy gets booked for diving. He’s got to get out of that, because right away the referee’s then looking for it. He might have got it had he not dived in the first half.
“He’s planted a seed in the referee’s head, and if we’re players out there then we’re in the referee’s ear, calling him a diver. So you’re planting the seeds in the referee’s head too.”
Lampard: You don’t get those here
Frank Lampard felt Attwell’s decision to wave away Gordon’s protests had been influenced by a raucous home crowd at Anfield, where Liverpool have not given away a single spot-kick in the Premier League all season.
He said: “It was a penalty in the second half. I don’t think you get them here. I think if that is Mo Salah at the other end, he gets the penalty.
“I am not trying to create conflict there, I just think it is the reality of football sometimes. Maybe I have played for clubs sometimes at the top reaches of the league, with the crowd behind them, you get more than you don’t.
“The second one on Anthony is a foul. It is a clear foul. But you don’t get them here.”
Souness: Mane lucky to stay on
In a game which often threatened to boil over, Sadio Mane was cautioned for pushing Allan’s face moments before half-time during a brawl following Richarlison’s nasty-looking foul on Fabinho, but replays showed the Liverpool forward was lucky to avoid being sent off.
He was also pictured pushing his finger into the face of Everton defender Mason Holgate in the same incident, in a moment which appeared to be missed by both Attwell and the VAR officials.
Referring to the incident at half-time, Souness said: “Mane’s lucky, he’s pushed Allan and tried to poke Mason Holgate as well. It’s not a push on Holgate, he’s got his finger out, there’s more intent than just a push.”