Sunday, 19th August, 2012
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has insisted his side’s 3-0 defeat away at West Brom yesterday was "harsh".
The Reds were comfortably beaten by the Baggies, who were already leading 1-0 before Liverpool defender Daniel Agger was sent off.
Zoltan Gera had handed West Brom the lead just before half-time and then in the 57th minute, Agger was sent off, with a penalty awarded at the same time. Liverpool had a let off from the resulting spot kick though, as Shane Long could not convert.
However, the Baggies did not have to wait long for another penalty, with Martin Skrtel at fault; this time Peter Odemwingie took the spot kick and made no mistake.
The rout was completed in the 77th minute when Chelsea loanee Romelu Lukaku opened his West Brom account, inflicting on Liverpool a disastrous opening day defeat and getting the Rodgers era at Anfield off to a poor start.
The Reds boss himself however felt the final result was unfair on his team and took positives from the match.
"I thought the scoreline was harsh, I’ve got to be honest", the Reds boss told his club’s official site.
"After the first couple of minutes of the game, we got good control and rhythm in our game. Up until they scored the first goal, it looked as though we were the team who were going to get it.
"I’ve no complaints about the first goal – it was a fantastic strike (by Gera). We defended the (initial) corner quite well with good height and distance on our clearance. Glen Johnson probably couldn’t have done any more as he went to press the ball, but it was wonderful technique.
"We were virtually controlling most of the game in the first half, but then we found ourselves 1-0 down.
"I’m not one to go on about referees, but in the second half I thought the two (penalty) decisions – three if you include the sending off – were very, very harsh. I don’t think either of the decisions were penalties. If you see them again on the replay, you’ll see that they were very, very harsh.
"Obviously then with 10 men and chasing the game, it becomes difficult."
Rodgers’ men now face a tough run of fixtures which should test claims they may be able to return to the top four this season.
In the Premier League, Liverpool host Manchester City on Sunday, before Arsenal are the visitors on 2nd September. After that, a tricky trip to Sunderland is followed by a visit from fierce rivals Manchester United.
Read our brand new betting tips & articles on the matches ahead at Inside-Bet.com