LIVERPOOL boss BRENDAN RODGERS defends Luis SUAREZ over diving claims and slams CHELSEA striker SAMUEL ETO’O.
Monday. December 30, 2013 – Liverpool manager, Brendan Rodgers, has hit out at Chelsea striker, Samuel Eto’o for his “wild” challenge on Jordan Henderson on Sunday which he believes warranted a red card.
The Reds went down 2-1 to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, with Eto’o scoring the winner with a close-range effort 11 minutes before the break after Liverpool opened the scoring just three minutes into the match courtesy of Martin Skrtel, which was as a result of a free-kick for Eto’o’s high tackle on Henderson.
The Blues recovered to move ahead before half-time thanks to Eden Hazard’s magnificent curling effort in the 17th minute and Eto’o’s third Premier League goal.
However, Rodgers believes Eto’o should not have been on the pitch at that stage, though he refused to blame referee Howard Webb.
Rodgers said: “I know we scored from it, but that was a wild challenge where he’s (Eto’o’s) raked down his (Henderson’s) knee and shin and didn’t even get a yellow card.
“He never even got booked for that, but he’s a top referee Howard – he’s a world-class referee.”
On the same breath, Rodgers defended striker Luis Suarez whom Mourinho accused of ‘provoking’ defenders.
He added:”Luis will always provoke a challenge in the box because he’s world class, where he doesn’t expect to provoke a challenge is where he’s challenged by someone who’s not involved in the contact.
“If you watch it again, he’s running to challenge Azpilicueta. Eto’o is street wise and cute and blocks him, on another day you get that because it’s a challenge in the area.”