Luis Diaz was a standout once more as Liverpool left Brighton with a 2-0 win, a valuable one in the title race. But it was a game that should have been played against 10 men.
The Reds were on the road for the first time in nearly a month in the Premier League, with Brighton the hosts as Klopp’s side looked to again heap pressure on Man City.
And while Brighton came out of the traps the brighter of the two teams, another Joel Matip assist paved the way for Luis Diaz’s second goal as a Red.
But controversy reined as Robert Sanchez escaped punishment for a reckless tackle, with neither a yellow card or a red being brandished in a dumfounding decision from the officials.
Mohamed Salah added the second from the penalty spot to take his league tally to 20 for the fourth time in his Liverpool career, before coming off with a knock.
The 2-0 win was the eighth in a row for Klopp’s side and keeps the wheels in motion to the ultimate goal this season, and supporters had plenty to say on social media:
That included more praise for a certain Diaz…
Love Diaz. Just gives me these vibes that Torres and Suarez gave me as soon as they touched a football for LFC. Just has it.
— Red (@TaintlessRed) March 12, 2022
I love everything about him.
— The Redmen TV (@TheRedmenTV) March 12, 2022
Luis Diaz is absolutely superb. Exceptionally brave for the header, always making things happen in possession and relentless in the press out of it. Everything you want in a Liverpool player.
— Leanne Prescott (@_lfcleanne) March 12, 2022
Reds rarely out of 1st gear, a little sloppy and wasteful at time, but the Reds win 2-0 and that’s all that matters. Diaz is magic though.
— Jeff Goulding (@ShanklysBoys1) March 12, 2022
For me MOTM is Luis Diaz. One of the fastest adapters to the PL. Work rate & play style truly impressive. Matip, Alison were both massive.
— Canadian Kop (@thecanadiankop) March 12, 2022
Luis Díaz is a ridiculously good wide outlet. He chases down everything, makes clever runs, good ball-carrier and can control & bring down awkward passes. It feels like you can just chip balls into him down that left channel at any moment & he’ll be able to make something of it.
— Raj Chohan (@rajsinghchohan) March 12, 2022
Deserved win for Liverpool in a game that was potentially a banana skin. Weren’t superb but pretty good. Diaz man of the match, but Mané — who lead the line well — and TAA also good. Henderson and Fabinho decent. Nutshell
— John O’Sullivan (@NotoriousJOS) March 12, 2022
Another hard fought victory. Could have been more, but games are coming thick and fast, so you take the 3 points no matter how they come.
— Rory Greenfield (@RoryGreenfield) March 12, 2022
— Jamie Carragher (@Carra23) March 12, 2022
And the lack of a red card was a big talking point…
It is absolutely ludicrous that someone spends years working as a referee and studying the laws of the game, yet can sit watching numerous replays on a monitor of that Sanchez challenge and not see anything
— John Bradley (@jbradleymedia) March 12, 2022
I generally don’t use the word ‘bottlers’ for footballers as usually when it’s used it’s basically because a player has made an unintentional mistake or isn’t good enough to execute well. But some referees or VARs do bottle big decisions, they don’t want to make them so ignore them.
— Red (@TaintlessRed) March 12, 2022
Can’t believe that wasn’t even a check it yourself ref.. anywhere on the pitch that’s a red,
— Robbie Fowler (@Robbie9Fowler) March 12, 2022
Attwell after Klopp finds him. pic.twitter.com/Tho1WIXRqK
— Sam McGuire (@SamMcGuire90) March 12, 2022
Nov 2020: Stuart Attwell awards Brighton a penalty after VAR review.
March 2022: Stuart Attwell overlooks red-card challenge from Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez.
— Jack Lusby (@LusbyJack) March 12, 2022
Not even a yellow card. Not even a VAR recommendation that the ref look at it. Stuart Atwell another of the useless bunch. Not fit for purpose. I know I rant about this shit, but this is utter bollocks #LFC pic.twitter.com/mvCOOGHcbf
— Paul Tomkins (@paul_tomkins) March 12, 2022
Still can’t believe the keeper didn’t get a red card for this challenge on Diaz, in fact he went un-punished
Would love to know who are on these VAR panels ? pic.twitter.com/uDAXpDaWXO
— Mick Quinn (@mickquinn1089) March 12, 2022
Imagine watching the replay of that and thinking “yep, nothing wrong with that, absolutely fine”. One of the worst decisions of the season – which is saying something given how many howlers there have been.
— Joel Rabinowitz (@joel_archie) March 12, 2022
The trip to the south coast was another potential banana skin for the Reds, but one they avoided with a timely goal on either half – although it certainly could have been more.
Klopp was readily shouting for his players to pass at the crucial moment and the goal difference could have taken a bigger boost, but the most important stat was Brighton 0, Liverpool 2.
The victory crucially keeps Liverpool on City’s coattails ahead of their Monday night game, and Alisson played a key role late in the piece for his 19th clean sheet of the season. Now to Arsenal we go.