Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has been quick to defend his striker Luis Suarez following his controversial goal in the 2-1 win over Mansfield in the FA Cup third round on Sunday.
Suarez clearly handled the ball in the lead-up to his goal, which turned out to be the winning one and got a lot of criticism for it. But, if the officials’ don’t give a decision, is it the job of the player to hold his hands up and say it was handball? No, probably not.
If it was any other player, you feel as though it would have been called a bit ‘cheeky’ – but as it is Suarez – he is being called a cheat. When it comes to controversial players that are not at all popular with opposition supporters, the Uruguayan does take some beating.
His manager has, as you would expect him to, defended his number seven as he said: “It’s not been deliberate as it’s pushed up and hit his hand. It’s up to the officials to decide that.
“There’s no doubt it was handball, but the referee and the officials ruled it wasn’t deliberate.
“I spoke to the fourth official when it was given because I couldn’t see and he said it was [handball] so I can only assume they thought it wasn’t deliberate.
It is not the job of the player to admit to a foul. If it was at the other end and your hand stops the ball from going in the net, you are not going to say ‘sorry referee, that is a penalty’ are you?
Maybe the romance of the FA Cup took over a little bit as well as everyone bar the red half of Merseyside seemed to Mansfield go through to the fourth round or at least force a replay.
It was harsh on Mansfield, of course it was, and they did deserve something from the game as the referee should be spotting a handball as blatant as that every time.
It isn’t Suarez that should be getting the blame though, he just did what anyone else would do, played to the whistle and stuck the ball in the net. After that, it is not up to him what happens.
He has to go to Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon as well, so he might be the one feeling a bit hard done by as the chances of get a penalty there are, well, we wouldn’t like to say.