(Reuters) - Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes rival managers talking about penalties that have been awarded to his team could be a way of influencing referees.
Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp said following Monday’s 1-0 Premier League defeat at Southampton that he was baffled they were not awarded a penalty and claimed other teams would not have been denied by the officials.
Klopp added in his post-match interview that United had more penalties in two years than he had in 5-1/2 years at Liverpool.
“I don’t count how many penalties they have, so if they want to spend time on worrying about when we get fouled in the box, I don’t spend time on that,” Solskjaer told reporters ahead of Wednesday’s League Cup semi-final with Manchester City.
Solskjaer pointed out that his side were denied a penalty in last season’s FA Cup semi-final defeat by Chelsea after manager Frank Lampard suggested the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) had favoured United during the campaign.
“I can’t talk on behalf of other managers, why they say things like this,” Solskjaer added.
“Obviously I felt it worked last year in the semis in the FA Cup because Frank spoke about it and we had a nailed-on penalty we should have had that we didn’t get.
“So maybe it’s a way of influencing referees. I don’t know, but I don’t worry about that. When they foul our players it’s a penalty. It’s just when it’s inside the box.”
Following their League Cup clash with City, United face Watford in the FA Cup third round on Saturday. They return to Premier League action against leaders Liverpool on Jan. 17.
Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Lincoln Feast.
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