Brendan Rodgers has leapt to the defence of Luis Suarez after the striker’s controversial goal saw Liverpool edge past Mansfield Town with a 2-1 victory to see them through to the 4th round of the FA Cup.
The goal was number 19 of the season for Suarez, but the ball clearly struck his hand before falling to his feet for the finish. The incident prompted Mansfield chief executive Carolyn Radford to say it felt like a replay had been “stolen” from her club. Rodgers though has defended the player, saying he was under no obligation to ‘own up’.
Suarez was subjected to cries of “cheat” from the home crowd, but Rodgers has defended his player – saying he was under no obligation to ‘own up’.
“It hit Luis’s hand, there is no question about that, but it wasn’t deliberate, that’s the feeling I got when I saw it,” said Rodgers.
“Straight away I asked the fourth official if it was handball and he said ‘it was, but it wasn’t deliberate’.
“I don’t think it is a discussion. It is not his job to say it was handball. Would you ask the same if it was any other footballer if it wasn’t Luis Suarez?
“If it was someone else we probably wouldn’t be discussing it, because the officials clearly felt it wasn’t deliberate, which it wasn’t. When you see the replays you can see it pops up and hits him.
“But that is something the guy has to put up with. I am not sure what people want him to do in that position.”