Sean Dyche has hit back at Jurgen Klopp following his comments after the Reds’ victory at Turf Moor on Wednesday and questioned why he did not talk about a supposed dive from Daniel Sturridge in the first half.
The Reds overturned a second-half deficit to triumph 3-1 on the road, though victory came at a cost as defender Joe Gomez suffered a fractured left leg during the first half.
The England international was injured following a challenge from Ben Mee, with Klopp claiming after the game he had spoken to referee Stuart Attwell about the danger of injuries in the face of the home side’s physical approach to proceedings.
“I said after the first challenge, I don’t know who did it, sliding tackle from six or seven yards, getting the ball, everybody likes it, I said to the ref ‘it’s no foul but please tell them you cannot do that’,” the German said in his post-match news conference.
Liverpool confirmed on Thursday that Gomez is set to be out for up to six weeks, meaning he will miss Liverpool’s pivotal Champions League fixture with Napoli next week, as well as the home clash with Manchester United.
Dyche sent his best wishes to the 21-year-old but insisted Mee had done nothing wrong and accused Daniel Sturridge of cheating after the forward appeared to dive to win a free-kick.
“I was a little confused. I couldn’t make out what part of that was right and wrong,” Dyche told the media. “What I would say is this, and I think it’s important to register, there were some excellent tackles last night.
“I think the only one that was questionable was from Bardo [Phil Bardsley]. I think Ben Mee’s was a fantastic tackle. I imagine a player who seems to be an honest player, in Gomez, realised that. That was the message we got after.
“We send him our best if any injury has occurred but it wasn’t from a bad tackle.
“He [Klopp] didn’t reference Daniel Sturridge’s cheating when he went down, nothing near him, and he got a free-kick for it.”
Dyche also made clear that Klopp appeared to be in a minority of one in thinking there was an issue over the struggling home side’s approach to defending against a team sitting second in the table.
“Our lads went about their business terrifically last night and everyone else apart from the manager seemed to agree,” he added.
“The media said we went about it the right way, tried to take on the game, tried to win a football match. I didn’t see anything in it other than players trying to win a football match, and showing the will, courage and demand to try to win a football match against one of the top sides in the country.”