Liverpool’s Egyptian import, Mohamed Salah, has been accused of diving to secure a penalty that gave The Reds an equaliser after going down 1-0 to West Ham on Saturday.
Liverpool great Graeme Souness, who accused Salah of diving, said, “I don’t give that if I’m a referee in the Premier League. I’ve seen Salah do this time and time again.
“This is totally an unnatural way to fall. Look, he doesn’t actually kick him, the West Ham player makes contact with his ankle.
“I think it’s careless and given an enormous invitation for Salah to throw himself to the ground.
“For me I think it’s a really harsh penalty and that’s coming from a Liverpool supporter.”
West Ham took a 10th-minute lead through Pablo Fornals, with the Spanish midfielder driving home after a poor header out from Joe Gomez landed straight at his feet.
Liverpool drew level just before the break when Mohamed Salah was fouled in the area by a clumsy challenge from Arthur Masuaku and the Egyptian, who had thrown himself to the ground dramatically, stepped up to dispatch the spot kick.
The Egyptian forward stepped up to fire home a penalty in the first half and level the scores at Anfield – but the circumstances in which the spot kick was awarded have divided opinion.
Substitute Diogo Jota grabbed the winner as Liverpool ground out a 2-1 victory over West Ham United at Anfield on Saturday to take the lead at the top of the Premier League and equal a club record of 63 home league matches unbeaten.
Defending champions Liverpool have 16 points from seven games, three points more than Everton who play at Newcastle United on Sunday.
“The world is in a difficult place and we are happy to be allowed to play football. So we have to try everything to win football games. It’s not about shining, or flying, or whatever, it’s about hard work,” said Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp.
“That was absolutely necessary against this opponent. It’s not about the simple stuff because they are too good for that – you need to be cheeky, tricky as well, and we were,” he added.
West Ham manager David Moyes was upset with the decision to award Salah a penalty after his reaction to contact in the box.
“I’m amazed that a penalty was given in the first half. I can’t believe that we’re allowing those sorts of penalties to be awarded,” he said.
“We weren’t clinical enough at times. We missed a couple of really good opportunities to get another goal. I wouldn’t say we were unlucky today, but I’m really disappointed when we were 1-0 up that the penalty was given.”
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