Jürgen Klopp described Liverpool’s 98th‑minute winner against Newcastle as “the perfect response” to the time-wasting at Anfield after Fabio Carvalho’s late strike sparked a furious confrontation between the opposition benches.
Liverpool overturned Alexander Isak’s debut goal for Newcastle through Roberto Firmino and the substitute Carvalho, who scored in the third minute of time added on to five minutes of stoppage time. The additional time was added after treatment to the Newcastle goalkeeper Nick Pope and time-wasting by Joelinton, leaving Klopp to rejoice in the timing of a dramatic victory.
“I enjoyed the win but we should have played more football,” he said. “Newcastle did really well with how they put us under pressure. There was really a lot in the last 20-25 minutes when they start struggling with the intensity but we should have done better. We looked desperate before we were. Being 1-0 down is obviously not cool but that was the least of my problems at half-time. It was a difficult game to play because we didn’t play a lot. The game was just interrupted constantly for some reason and that doesn’t give you a chance to gain any momentum.
“In the end I was very happy when we got that last corner and what Mo [Salah] and Fabio made of it was absolutely outstanding. It was the perfect response to what had happened.”
Klopp claimed not to have witnessed the bust-up sparked when objects were thrown from the Newcastle bench towards the celebrating Liverpool dug-out. “I didn’t see it, honestly,” he said. “I turned in the other direction to celebrate and when I turned around I was surprised.”
Newcastle’s manager, Eddie Howe, admitted defeat was cruel on his emerging team but denied gamesmanship from his players resulted in their own downfall. “I don’t know [where the added time came from],” he said. “I would need someone else to guide me. It seemed the final whistle would never come but we needed to defend the final situation better than we did. It is a cruel game. Compared to the game at Anfield last year, we were in it more. We didn’t intend to drop deep, we didn’t until the latter minutes. We had a day’s less preparation. Our players emptied their tank at Wolves. There was fatigue and players going down with cramp. There was no gamesmanship.”
Jordan Henderson joined Liverpool’s list of midfield wounded with a hamstring injury in the second half but Klopp claimed an addition on transfer deadline day is unlikely: The manager said: “I don’t think so no. As long as there is time we should not close the door completely. Hendo injured a hamstring now which is absolutely not helpful, but I don’t think so.”