Football

Jose Mourinho aims dig at Juergen Klopp, claims better team lost

Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho took aim at Juergen Klopp after his team lost 2-1 to the German's Liverpool side at Anfield yesterday morning (Singapore time) and even found time to refuel his old feud with Pep Guardiola.

A 90th-minute header from Roberto Firmino sent the Reds three points clear of Spurs at the top of the English Premier League.

It was hard to take for Mourinho, with Steven Bergwijn earlier hitting the post and Harry Kane missing a great chance.

Asked about what appeared to be a testy exchange with Klopp after the final whistle, Mourinho told Amazon Prime: "I told him the best team lost. He disagreed. That's his opinion.

"By the way, if I behaved the way on the touchline like he does, I have no chance to stay there - and I'm out after a minute."

Asked whether he was referring to the "animated" way Klopp reacted during the game on the touchline, Mourinho replied: "That's animated? That's animated? Or do you want me to take the screen (from) the fourth official's hands?"

The latter comment was almost certainly a reference to Manchester City boss Guardiola's response to the added time shown during his side's 1-1 draw with West Bromwich Albion on Wednesday morning, when he grabbed hold of the fourth official's board.

Asked if he thought Klopp's behaviour had gone over the limit, Mourinho said there appeared to be double standards. He said: "For some reason, I am different. And that's that."

He told the BBC in a separate interview: "Everything is fine between us.

"The referees let him behave the way he does. It's not my problem. I feel sad for it because I cannot do it but it's just the way it is."

Klopp appeared nonplussed when asked about his conversation with Mourinho at full time.

"It was not heated at all," he told the BBC.

"He wasn't happy because he told me the better team lost - and I thought he was joking! But he wasn't. So that's it."

Klopp's side took the lead in the 26th minute when Mohamed Salah's shot deflected off Spurs defender Toby Alderweireld and looped into the far corner.

But Tottenham struck back seven minutes later, Giovani Lo Celso breaking strongly before finding Son Heung-min with a superb pass. The South Korean beat Alisson with a clever and composed finish.

Despite the Reds enjoying the vast majority of possession, Spurs had two great chances to go ahead with Bergwijn bursting into the box before hitting the post. Moments later, Kane escaped his marker during a corner but fluffed his header. - REUTERS, AFP

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