LIVERPOOL, England (Reuters) – Pep Guardiola said coins were thrown at him during Manchester City’s 1-0 loss to Liverpool on Sunday, a heated encounter in which home coach Juergen Klopp was sent to the stands.
The City bench celebrated vigorously as, after a poor first half, Phil Foden thought he had fired the champions into the lead in the 53rd minute, only for his strike to be ruled out after a VAR review.
Guardiola was furious with the decision, even before referee Anthony Taylor had finished viewing the pitch-side monitor, turning around to remonstrate with Liverpool fans in the stands.
In the aftermath, the City boss said the Liverpool supporters retaliated.
“Next time they will do it better, they didn’t get me,” Guardiola said. “They tried but didn’t get me. They got them (coins) on the coach years ago but not this time.”
Erling Haaland was penalised for a foul on Fabinho in the build-up to Foden’s finish from a tight angle, a decision Guardiola was still not happy with after the match.
“This is Anfield,” Guardiola added. “The referee spoke with my assistant and Juergen before the game and said ‘Today I won’t make fouls’ and all the game was play on, play on, play on, except the goal we scored.
“The crowd and everything, many years we come here. We lost because we made a mistake and play one of the best teams in the world. It is so tight and the margins are so fine.”
Klopp was sent to the stands after he was unhappy with the officials later in the second half, feeling match-winner Mohamed Salah was fouled by Bernardo Silva right in front of him.
He was nonetheless delighted to get a result that can kick-start his side’s stuttering season, having ended City’s unbeaten run.
“The red card is my fault, I went over the top in that moment,” Klopp said. “That’s not ok, but as little excuse I would like to mention how can you not whistle that as a foul?
“That (the result) felt good, very good. On a normal day you should not even try against City, you have to play to your limits. That’s what we did. It was a top performance from the boys.”
Liverpool later released a statement condemning some chants from City supporters during the match.
“We are deeply disappointed to hear vile chants relating to football stadium tragedies from the away section during today’s game at Anfield. The concourse in the away section was also vandalised with graffiti of a similar nature,” they said.
“We know the impact such behaviour has on the families, survivors and all those associated with such disasters.
“We are working with the relevant authorities and we will also work with Manchester City in order to do our utmost to ensure these chants are eradicated from football altogether.”
(Reporting by Peter Hall; Editing by Toby Davis)