Rodgers: Superior Liverpool denied clear penalty against Everton

The Reds Boss feels his side deserved to win the first Merseyside derby of the season, especially after seeing a spot-kick appeal turned down within the opening 10 minutes


Brendan Rodgers felt Liverpool were wrongly denied an early penalty in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Everton at Anfield.

Phil Jagielka rescued a point for Everton in some style with a powerful injury-time equaliser from long range, cancelling out Steven Gerrard’s 65th-minute opener.

But Rodgers believes Liverpool should have been awarded a spot-kick inside the first 10 minutes when Gareth Barry appeared to handle a goal-bound shot from Raheem Sterling.

“The one where the ball was shot into the box and Barry grabbed it with both hands,” he told reporters. “That was nearly a save. And I don’t know what [the referee] was seeing because he had a good look at it.

“If your arms are above your head and you stop it as blatantly as that; how it’s not a penalty I’ll never know.”

Barry was already on a booking at the time and Rodgers added: “Maybe that was in the referee’s mind. For us it was disappointing because it was a clear handball.

“We certainly didn’t get what we deserved. I think it was very clear we were much the better side, and when you concede a goal like that so late on, it probably epitomises the luck that went against us.”

Rodgers could at least take heart from an improved Liverpool performance and the contribution of Gerrard, who has been criticised for his recent displays.

“He’s shown many times over the years that’s his range,” said Rodgers. “He was letting Mario [Balotelli] take a few [free-kicks] in the first half and I was screaming for him to take it.

“It was a goal that should have won the game, a wonderful free-kick, and I thought his performance was outstanding.

“I’m very proud of the players. Arguably should have had at least two more and have definitely had a penalty. So I think for us, it [the result] was disappointing but the performance was at a much better level.”

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