Liverpool still hold out hope they can scrape into the top four but their late charge for Champions League football could be derailed if manager Jurgen Klopp’s comments about referee Paul Tierney come back to bite them.

Following the dramatic 4-3 victory over Tottenham, in which the Reds needed an added-time winner from Diogo Jota to extend a four-match winning run after squandering a 3-0 lead from the opening 15 minutes, Klopp said he did not know what the official “has against us”.

Klopp was booked for his over-zealous celebration in front of fourth official John Brooks but said of Tierney’s attitude: “What he said to me when he gave me the yellow card is not OK.”

The Professional Game Match Officials Limited was quick to respond, saying in a statement: “PGMOL is aware of the comments made by Jurgen Klopp after his side’s fixture with Tottenham Hotspur.

“Match officials in the Premier League are recorded in all games via a communications system and having fully reviewed the audio of referee Paul Tierney from today’s fixture, we can confirm he acted in a professional manner throughout including when issuing the caution to the Liverpool manager so, therefore, we strongly refute any suggestion that Tierney’s actions were improper.”

But it is Klopp’s suggestion of bias which is likely to land him in trouble with the Football Association and could lead to him receiving a touchline ban for Liverpool’s remaining few matches.

He was previously warned about his conduct after being banned for one match and fined £30,000 after the FA successfully won an appeal against the leniency of his punishment for berating an assistant referee during October’s home win over Manchester City.

The absence of Klopp from the touchline for any or all of Liverpool’s eminently-winnable remaining matches against Fulham, Brentford, Leicester, Aston Villa and Southampton could kill their momentum and blow their outside chances of catching fourth-placed Manchester United, who are currently seven points ahead with a match in hand.

One mistake and the best Liverpool can hope for is Europa League football but they came close to throwing it away against Spurs having coasted into a three-goal lead through strikes from Curtis Jones, Luis Diaz and Mohamed Salah.

Harry Kane equalled Wayne Rooney’s Premier League tally of 208 goals just before half-time, leaving only Alan Shearer (260) ahead of him in the all-time list, and when Richarlison’s first league strike in added time followed Son Heung-min’s 77th-minute effort, Spurs looked like they had escaped with an unlikely draw.

However, just 99 seconds after equalising, Jota slotted in his fifth goal in four matches to spark wild – some would argue too wild in Klopp’s case – celebrations as Liverpool’s slim Champions League qualification hopes were kept alive.

“Sometimes we don’t half make it hard for ourselves,” said midfielder Harvey Elliott, back in the side after almost a month.

“We started the game unbelievably well, got three goals in quick succession, and personally I think we took our foot off the gas a little bit and allowed them to play a bit more football while not playing football ourselves.

“It’s a tough one to explain. It’s not a lack of concentration. Maybe because going 3-0 up early hardly ever happens so the way we deal with it is new to us.

“It’s always a hard situation because emotions are high, performing well and then we just decide to switch and didn’t do our game-plan.

“We decided to keep the ball and I felt it was just a bit slow in the way we moved it around and that caused ourselves problems. That’s something we need to snap out of.”

Ryan Mason, two matches into another spell as interim head coach following the sacking of Cristian Stellini after the 6-1 embarrassment at Newcastle, was less interested in Tottenham’s top-four chances now they had dropped to sixth than he was of repairing some of the recent damage.

“My priority is to get some togetherness, create some good feelings and energy around the place and bring our fans with us,” he said.

“The only way to do that is winning matches so it’s difficult to take. We’re just devastated in the way we lost the game.”

Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic and head coach Marco Silva will not be punished further after the Football Association's appeal to lengthen their bans was rejected.

Mitrovic was banned for eight games for pushing referee Chris Kavanagh during Fulham's 3-1 FA Cup quarter-final loss at Manchester United last month.

Silva was given a two-match ban after being sent off in the same game for improper conduct and using "abusive and insulting" language.

The FA argued the punishments, imposed by an independent regulatory commission, were "clearly insufficient" and deserved to be extended.

But the governing body confirmed on Friday its appeal had been rejected, meaning Silva is free to return to the touchline, while Mitrovic will be back for Fulham's final three games.

Mitrovic and Silva both apologised last month for their actions.

Among Fulham's final three Premier League games is a trip to Old Trafford on May 28.

Tottenham and Brighton and Hove Albion have each been fined £100,000 for the touchline clash during their Premier League encounter earlier this month.

The incident occurred in the 58th minute of Spurs' 2-1 win over the Seagulls, which saw both bosses – Cristian Stellini and Roberto De Zerbi – sent to the stands.

Tempers had become flared during a game in which Brighton saw two goals and a penalty claim denied after VAR checks, before going on to lose to their hosts.

When asked about the incident after the game on April 8, Spurs interim head coach Stellini told Sky Sports: "I don't like to be involved when there is a fight or something too aggressive. I'm quiet and focused on the game.

"I try to do my job. I want to speak only about my team and the game, not what happened between us and them on the bench."

Fellow Italian De Zerbi responded to BBC Sport: "I am used to always respecting everyone and I want the same towards me."

The FA charged both clubs for the "mass confrontation" and confirmed the fines on Wednesday, saying: "Both clubs admitted they failed to ensure that their benches conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and did not behave in a way which is improper during the 58th minute."

Constantine Hatzidakis will return to action on Saturday in the Championship after being cleared over his dramatic clash with Liverpool defender Andy Robertson.

The assistant referee was investigated by the Football Association over an incident during the Reds' Premier League game with Arsenal earlier this month.

Television footage appeared to show that Hatzidakis' elbow made contact with Robertson's chin at the end of the first half, for which the official has said he has apologised.

He will feature in the second tier for his return as an assistant referee in the Championship game between Preston North End and Blackburn Rovers at Deepdale.

Hatzidakis will then be back in the Premier League next Tuesday when he is on VAR duty for Leeds United against Leicester City at Elland Road.

Liverpool have been fined £37,500 by the Football Association (FA) for an incident that saw their players surround the referee in their recent 4-1 Premier League defeat at Manchester City.

The incident occurred in the 34th minute of the game at the Etihad Stadium with the score at 1-1 when City midfielder Rodri committed a cynical foul on Cody Gakpo.

The Spaniard had already been booked for a similar infringement just minutes earlier, but referee Simon Hooper refrained from showing a second yellow, which would have meant a red card.

Diogo Jota, Fabinho, Virgil van Dijk and captain Jordan Henderson approached the official to appeal the decision, which has led to the FA fining the club.

According to a statement from The FA, Liverpool admitted it had "failed to ensure its players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and/or do not behave in a way which is improper".

The FA announced on Thursday it would be taking "no further action" against assistant referee Constantine Hatzidakis after he appeared to aim an elbow at Liverpool defender Andrew Robertson in last Sunday's draw with Arsenal.

Liverpool's next game sees them travel to Leeds United on Monday.

Wolves winger Daniel Podence has been charged by the Football Association (FA) for allegedly spitting at Nottingham Forest's Brennan Johnson in Saturday's 1-1 Premier League draw.

During a disagreement between the two sets of players towards the end of the second half, Podence and Johnson exchanged words at close proximity.

Although replays appeared to show Podence in the act of spitting, footage was unable to conclusively prove if the Portugal international actually spat, and therefore the VAR review did not lead to a red card.

Johnson was asked about the incident at full-time and, while he told Sky Sports he was not going to "allegate [Podence]", the Forest player also claimed he "felt like some sort of spit came towards my face".

The FA seemingly saw enough to deem Podence worthy of retrospective punishment on Wednesday.

A statement read: "Wolverhampton Wanderers' Daniel Podence has been charged after the forward allegedly spat at an opposing player during the 90th minute."

The FA also charged Forest for their players surrounding the referee in the first half, while both teams' assistant managers will answer charges of improper and/or violent conduct.

Aleksandar Mitrovic has been handed an eight-match ban after pushing referee Chris Kavanagh during Fulham's FA Cup defeat at Manchester United last month.

Mitrovic was sent off for pushing Kavanagh after the official dismissed his Fulham team-mate Willian for handball during the second half of their 3-1 quarter-final defeat at Old Trafford. 

The Serbia international subsequently apologised for his actions, though he always appeared likely to receive an extended ban after the Football Association (FA) said a three-match suspension was "clearly insufficient".

Mitrovic was subsequently charged with violent conduct, as well as with using "improper, abusive, insulting and threatening" language towards Kavanagh. 

Following a hearing by an independent regulatory commission, it was revealed Mitrovic would be banned for a total of eight matches on Tuesday, with the striker also receiving a £75,000 fine.

Mitrovic missed Saturday's Premier League defeat at Bournemouth through suspension, meaning he must sit out seven further games and will next be available when the Cottagers face Southampton on May 13.

Fulham's head coach Marco Silva was also shown a red card during the defeat to United, and he will serve a two-game touchline ban after being charged with improper conduct and using "abusive and insulting" language.

Silva, who subsequently said he regretted the incident, has also been fined a total of £40,000 after the FA said his post-match comments questioned the integrity of the match officials.

In the aftermath of the loss, Silva said it was "difficult to understand" why Kavanagh had been appointed to the fixture, accusing the referee of making mistakes during a prior defeat at West Ham.

There could be more bad news to come for Fulham, however, with the FA outlining an intention to appeal the sanctions in a bid to increase their severity.

In a statement, the governing body said: "Our current intention is to appeal both sanctions, however, we will await the written reasons before confirming our final position."

The Football Association has condemned a section of Manchester City's supporters after chants about the Hillsborough disaster during Saturday's win over Liverpool.

Pep Guardiola's side recovered from an early deficit to run out comfortable 4-1 winners against Jurgen Klopp's Reds at the Etihad Stadium.

But the game was marred by the conduct of some fans.

City issued their own apology after the match over damage to the Liverpool team bus as it left the stadium.

They also referred to "inappropriate chants", and now the FA has weighed in on a matter that is becoming a recurring source of anger.

"We are very concerned about the rise of abhorrent chants in stadiums that are related to the Hillsborough disaster and other football-related tragedies," read a widely reported statement.

"These chants are highly offensive and are deeply upsetting for the families, friends and communities who have been impacted by these devastating events, and we strongly condemn this behaviour.

"We support clubs and fans who try to stamp out this behaviour from our game.

"We also support the excellent work of the survivor groups who engage with stakeholders across football to help educate people about the damaging and lasting effects that these terrible chants can have."

It is not the first time the FA has been forced to condemn City supporters over chants relating to Hillsborough, with a similar incident last year leading to criticism from Guardiola.

Ninety-seven Liverpool fans lost their lives as a result of the disaster in 1989 during an FA Cup semi-final with Nottingham Forest at the Sheffield Wednesday ground.

Members of Arsenal and Aston Villa's technical teams have been charged by the Football Association over an altercation during their Premier League game last month.

The Gunners staged a remarkable 4-2 comeback at Villa Park on February 18, sealed by a dramatic own goal courtesy of their former goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez.

It came after earlier goals from Bukayo Saka and Oleksandr Zinchenko had helped the visitors draw on level terms, while Gabriel Martinelli added a fourth deep in injury time.

Celebrations were marred between a clash between Villa’s head of performance analysis Victor Manas and Arsenal's technical analyst Miguel Molina, and now the pair have been charged by the FA.

"Aston Villa's head of performance analysis, Victor Manas, and Arsenal's technical analyst coach, Miguel Molina, have been charged following their Premier League game on Wednesday 18 February," read a statement.

"It's alleged that Miguel Molina's behaviour and/or language during the 94th minute was improper and/or abusive and/or insulting, and that his behaviour in the tunnel after the final whistle was also improper."

Manas and Molina have until Friday to provide a response to the FA.

Wolves will have Matheus Nunes available for their next three matches after their appeal to the Football Association (FA) was upheld.

Nunes, an unused substitute, was sent off late on in Wolves' 4-2 home defeat to fellow strugglers Leeds United on Saturday.

The Portugal international had been remonstrating with the officials over the decision to allow Leeds' fourth goal, scored by Rodrigo, to stand despite what appeared to be a foul by Marc Roca in the build-up.

Julen Lopetegui confirmed Nunes was complaining about the linesman and that they would appeal the decision, with referee Michael Salisbury having incorrectly sent the midfielder off for violent conduct, which would have resulted in him missing games against Nottingham Forest, Chelsea and Brentford.

Wolves will be without Jonny, however, after the defender was sent off for a lunge on Luke Ayling.

The defeat left Wolves in 13th place in the Premier League, one point above Leeds and just three clear of the relegation zone.

Lopetegui thought his side were hard done by, with the former Spain coach claiming Wolves should have had a penalty.

"I'm not waiting for [further apologies]. I just want them [the officials] to do their job," he said.

Thomas Frank has backed Ivan Toney after leaked speculation over the Football Association's (FA) intended ban for his alleged breaches of betting rules, as well as suggestions he had trained badly while on England duty.

The Brentford striker has been charged with 262 alleged violations by English football's governing body, which took place over a four-year period.

There has been no official FA update on the matter but reports, initially by The Daily Mail on Tuesday, claimed Toney had pleaded guilty to the majority of charges and could face a six-month ban.

Those reports suggested the 26-year-old also denied some of the violations, though Toney was left bewildered by reported leaks within the FA, posting on Instagram that he was "shocked and disappointed" by them.

Toney earned a first England call-up in September but was left out of Gareth Southgate's squad for the World Cup.

Speaking at a press conference on Friday, Bees head coach Frank said: "The most important [thing] is Ivan. He is amazing in many aspects, the way he copes with pressure, or distraction, and this is of course a bigger one.

"This has been ongoing since November, and yet he just carried on scoring goals, performing for the team, driving the team. It is so remarkable.

"We are 11 games unbeaten [in the Premier League], so I guess that is a decent response."

Only Erling Haaland (27) and Harry Kane (18) have scored more than Toney's 14 goals in 21 Premier League appearances this season, and Frank praised his forward's ability to maintain his form despite the outside noise.

"It is like life, sometimes things get thrown at you and you need to deal with it," he said.

"I would say that we share the disappointment of Ivan in terms of the leaks, that is for a confidential case. It surprised us massively.

"The timing of the leaks, just before the World Cup and the March international [England] team [announcement].

"The talk about that there is a potential ban as long as up to six months, that disappoints us.

"Then we share the disappointment that the talk about Ivan trained badly with the England squad. What is that?

"It is his first time with the England squad and I never met a player who did not want to do everything they can out on the training pitch, that wants to do well to impress the gaffer.

"I can only talk about Ivan what I see out here [in training] and around the place, he is a fantastic person around the group.

"He has that unique emotional intelligence to be aware of the lowest player to the top players and staff members.

"He has trained well and to me he is clearly number two in England as a striker. He has proven that with the goals and the performances."

Ivan Toney hit out at "disturbing" speculation over the Football Association's (FA) intended ban for his alleged breaches of betting rules.

The Brentford striker has been charged with 262 alleged violations by English football's governing body, which took place over a four-year period.

There has been no official FA update on the matter but reports, initially by The Daily Mail on Tuesday, claimed Toney has pleaded guilty to the majority of charges and could face a six-month ban.

Those reports suggested the 26-year-old has also denied some of the violations, though Toney was left bewildered by reported leaks within the FA.

He posted on Instagram on Wednesday: "I was shocked and disappointed to see press speculation yesterday and today about the FA investigation process concerning me after I have been told by the FA that it is a confidential process until any decision has been made.

"It is especially disturbing for me to read that the FA is saying I shall be banned from football for six months before there has even been a hearing and it does make me worried about the process."

Toney earned a first England call-up in September but was left out of Gareth Southgate's squad for the World Cup.

FA chief executive Mark Bullingham stated that the forward's omission from the squad in Qatar was decided on "footballing grounds".

Toney plans to challenge the FA after a second instance of reported leaks.

He added: "My lawyers will be writing to the FA to request that they conduct a leak inquiry, as this is the second time stories have appeared in the newspapers – the last time was just before the selection for the England World Cup squad.

"As I continue to be told the investigation is meant to be confidential, I am unable to provide any further comment and shall continue to concentrate on my football."

Arsenal and Manchester City have been charged by the Football Association for surrounding referee Anthony Taylor during Wednesday's Premier League clash.

Defending champions City replaced the Gunners at the top of the table with a 3-1 victory at Emirates Stadium.

Tensions were high during such a huge showdown between the top two in the battle for the title.

The FA on Friday announced both clubs had been charged for allegedly failing to ensure their players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion in relation to three incidents that saw official Taylor confronted.

A statement from the governing body said: "Arsenal and Manchester City have been charged after their players surrounded the match official at different times during the Premier League fixture on Wednesday 15 February.

"It's alleged both clubs failed to ensure their players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion, with Arsenal's players surrounding the match official during the 56th minute, and Manchester City's doing so during the 42nd and 64th minutes.

"Both clubs have until Tuesday 21 February to provide their respective responses."

Liverpool and Everton have been charged by the Football Association (FA) following a "mass confrontation" late in Monday's Merseyside derby.

Jurgen Klopp's Reds won the Premier League game 2-0 at Anfield thanks to goals from Mohamed Salah and Cody Gakpo.

Usually a feisty encounter, proceedings were largely under control until a flash point in the 86th minute.

Andrew Robertson handled the ball but continued playing after the referee's whistle and then kicked the ball towards the Everton box, which was seemingly perceived as a blatant act of time-wasting by the Toffees.

Everton players swiftly confronted Robertson, who laughed in the face of Jordan Pickford before being held at the neck by Conor Coady.

The incident subsequently resulted in many other players – including substitutes – becoming embroiled in heated tussles on the touchline, though Pickford and Robertson were the only individuals booked.

Confirming the beginning of disciplinary proceedings, an FA statement read: "Liverpool and Everton have been charged following a mass confrontation during the 86th minute of their Premier League match on Monday, February 13.

"It's alleged that both clubs failed to ensure their players and/or benches conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and/or refrained from provocative behaviour.

"Liverpool and Everton have until Monday, February 20 to provide responses to their charges."


Arsenal have condemned the "unacceptable" behaviour of fans who hurled objects at Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne in Wednesday's Premier League match.

De Bruyne was pelted with bottles and cups from the stands as he made his way around the outside of the pitch towards the dugout after being substituted late on in City's 3-1 win.

The City playmaker, who opened the scoring at Emirates Stadium, later made light of the situation by posting a picture of a cup landing near him with the caption: "Beer anyone?"

The Football Association has already launched an investigation, while Arsenal are reviewing footage to track down the culprits.

"We are studying CCTV and if we are able to identify the culprits they will be subject to strict sanctions," a widely released statement by Arsenal on Thursday read.

"This is unacceptable and will not be tolerated."

City's win was their 11th in a row against Arsenal in the league and saw them usurp their opponents at the top of the table on goal difference, though the Gunners have a game in hand.

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