Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was bemused as to why his side did not get a penalty for Martin Odegaard’s handball in the first half of their 1-1 draw with Arsenal at Anfield.
VAR ruled referee Chris Kavanagh had not made a clear and obvious error in not penalising the Gunners captain after his low hand prevented Mohamed Salah getting past him.
Klopp disagreed, telling BBC Sport: “The penalty situation is a weird situation, I don’t know if the ref can see it, but you look at it and I’m not sure how you can say it’s not a penalty.”
In his post-match press conference the Liverpool manager added: “I didn’t see it in the game, I saw it after and I think we all agree it was handball.
“But I always wait until Mr Dermot (Gallagher) explains it the next day (in his role as a TV analyst) what’s really the case.
“He will find a way to explain to me why it was not handball. For me it’s a clear handball. I have no idea if it would have influenced the result.”
Gabriel’s early header was cancelled out by a brilliant goal by Salah to earn a point and leave the two teams first and second in the table at Christmas.
However, the hard-earned point was not without cost as Klopp has a big problem at left-back now as Kostas Tsimikas, deputising for Andy Robertson who has been out since October with a dislocated shoulder, broke his collarbone in a collision which also floored his manager after being pushed by Bukayo Saka.
“The problem I had in that moment, I thought, ‘OK, I am fine,’ so I was assuming that Kostas was fine as well and he’s actually obviously not fine,” said Klopp, who is hopeful a knee injury to Luis Diaz is only minor.
“He’s broken his collarbone at least. It’s really bad for us. I cannot say anything about that (Saka challenge). You have to judge that, not me.”
Mikel Arteta, who played in the last Arsenal team to win at Anfield in the league in September 2012, is hopeful the experience of being in a title race last season will stand his side in good stead as they hold top spot on Christmas Day.
That will be particularly important as three of the last six occasions a team top on December 25 did not go on to win the league involved the Gunners.
“They are certainly more experienced. What they have done today on this pitch, in this stadium, with the atmosphere they created as well, that was something else,” he said.
“The maturity and the courage that we showed I think we should be really proud of our players. We have experience of being where we are today.
“We should be really happy because that shows a lot of consistency for this new group in the best league in the world to lead two years in a row.
“But that’s it. We are where we want to be right now, both in the Premier League and the Champions League.
“Of course there are things that we have to improve, especially killing games. With the amount of dominance we are showing, some of the games are too close.”