Liverpool should have had two penalties – Rodgers

The Reds’ boss believes Jon Moss was right to award his side a spot-kick in the second period, though he felt Leandro Bacuna’s handball should also have been punished

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers believes his side should have had two penalties in their draw with Aston Villa despite there being question marks surrounding the spot-kick Luis Suarez won in the second half.

The Uruguay striker seemed to go down easily under the challenge of Brad Guzan early in the second period, but Rodgers believed that there was sufficient contact for referee Jon Moss to point to the spot.

The former Swansea boss also thought his side should have had another opportunity from 12 yards in the first half, though he admitted his side had done well to come from behind to claim a point.

“It was a good point. I don’t think we were anywhere near our level in the first half, and I think you have to give credit to Aston Villa for that,” he told reporters.

“I thought we got one penalty and didn’t get another one. I thought the one in the first half [Leandro] Bacuna handles the ball clearly. He saw the flight of the ball coming over and then moves away at the last minute. It hit his arm but went away for a corner.

“And the second one I thought was a penalty. It was a great pass, Luis took it up to the keeper and gets a touch on him. It was a Uruguayan penalty this week!

“Once he’s touched it around him, he [Guzan] doesn’t have his arms out, but his body makes contact with Luis, and I think it was a clear penalty.”

Rodgers also defended his selection after his side went two goals down and struggled with the pace and power of Villa’s attacking play.

“I go with my gut feeling. I felt it was an offensive team, of course. We’ve played that way before, so if you want to blame me then blame me.”

However, Villa boss Paul Lambert had a contrasting view on the penalty controversy but stopped short of accusing Suarez of diving.

“I thought Guzan pulled his arms away. It’s hard for the referee to judge it, but I’ve seen it on tape and Brad has pulled his arms away. I’ll let you decide if it’s a penalty,” he said.

“The referee has a split decision to make. I think when you look at it Brad has used his experience to pull his arms away but we’ve been punished. Suarez just ran with the ball. The guy is a world-class player.”

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