Keith Hackett has thrown his weight behind Jurgen Klopp following a contentious refereeing call during Liverpool’s 3-2 defeat to West Ham United prior to the international break.
Aaron Cresswell managed to escape any sanctions following a reckless challenge issued against England international, Jordan Henderson.
“Klopp is right in what he says. The first thing you have to have with a referee to enhance his performance is the future, is for him to admit he’s made a mistake,” the ex-official told Football Insider.
“What concerns me is the PGMOL are defending it to the hill. If it happens again, are they going to make the decision? If that’s the case, that’s where the game doesn’t want to be.
“What they should do is bring the referees in, because they meet regularly, plays these DVDs and discuss them.
“The Cresswell incident needs to be discussed to understand what you can learn. Was Pawson too close? Did he have a good view? Why did he miss the offence?
“Even if they say it’s not an error they should review it because they’ve got a very experienced manager saying it is.”
The 77-year-old explained that prior to Jurgen Klopp’s tenure at the Anfield helm he had experience talking to a former Reds boss to iron out any concerns over officiating calls.
“What I would do, when Benitez was at Liverpool, I got in my car and drove across to Melwood to have a conversation. That way, Benitez learned and I learned,” Hackett added. “There’s a greater understanding of what the referee’s up to. If they make an error, you can explain why he’s made an error.”
Whilst we can understand that some decisions occupy a certain grey area for referees, it’s difficult to understand how, with the benefit of VAR, the Hammers defender managed to avoid any punishment for his tackle.
Arguments have been made over the potential impact his sending off would have had on the game in question but realistically the most important factor we have to consider is player safety over the possibility of points gained.
Whilst we’ve no doubt that Cresswell didn’t intend to injure his compatriot, the reality of the situation is that our skipper could have been seriously harmed by the player’s actions on the day.
Hopefully the incident will lead to better contact between officials and managers as we try to evolve the game going forward.