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17th Dec 2021

Eddie Howe questions Mike Dean over “unjust” Liverpool goal

Simon Lloyd

Liverpool beat Newcastle 3-1 at Anfield on Thursday night

Newcastle manager Eddie Howe has said Liverpool’s equaliser against his side on Thursday was “unjust”, with Isaac Hayden injured in the build-up.

Liverpool went on to win the game at Anfield 3-1 but had fallen behind to an early strike from distance from former player Jonjo Shelvey.

Hayden and teammate Fabian Schar were both left on the ground in the aftermath of a corner, with the former seen clutching his head. Despite this, referee Mike Dean saw no need to stop the play, which resulted in Diogo Jota pulling Liverpool level.

Newcastle protests were ignored, with Liverpool adding salt to the wound minutes later when Mohamed Salah gave the home side the lead. Despite a spirited performance from Howe’s relegation-threatened team, Trent Alexander-Arnold’s shot from outside of the area in the second half confirmed they would be heading back to Tyneside without any points.

“I’m really disappointed with Liverpool’s first goal,” Howe said after full-time. “I need to see it again but it was clear to me that Isaac went down holding his head immediately. In my opinion, the game should have been stopped.

“I couldn’t believe what I was seeing… There is a lot of talk at the moment about head injuries and I felt that was a wrong decision.

“It’s had a huge bearing on the game. We had the lead. It feels unjust and I feel it was doubly hard on our players.

“I think [the referee Mike Dean] said to me he felt Isaac had held his back. For me, he held his head. He was dazed for four or five minutes. It’s a dangerous moment where we have to think about the player’s safety. I don’t think you want to see games decided when players are out of the game.

“I feel like we were really harshly treated today. It follows a similar pattern of games we’ve had where the decisions have gone against us for whatever reason.

“My feeling is the first goal and the decision for that had the key bearing on the result today and that’s the one that really aggrieves me tonight.”

The result leaves Newcastle in the relegation zone, having now played a game more than Watford in 16th. Liverpool, meanwhile, move back to within a point of Manchester City at the other end of the table.

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