First, let’s be clear about one thing.
In offering his views on Liverpool’s performance at Brighton & Hove Albion, Match of the Day pundit Ian Wright (and former Arsenal star) was full of praise for the Reds, and was far from personifying the grouchy former rival that we’ve seen in other pundits many a time.
In putting five goals past Brighton’s Mathew Ryan yesterday, Liverpool were, in Wright’s words, “a real proposition.”
“Brighton have only conceded not more than two goals in any Premier League game, I think this was a real eye opener for them,” noted Wright when discussing Liverpool’s opponents yesterday. “They’ve come up against real quality.”
But when responding to Gary Lineker’s observation that Brighton boss Chris Hughton seemed somewhat annoyed with Jürgen Klopp at the final whistle, Wright was somewhat more pointed in his criticism.
“When you’re scoring four and five goals, the fist-pumping and the gurning kind of gets to you in the end,” said Wright about Klopp’s notoriously effusive sideline celebrations. “I’m sure there are other managers who feel the same way [as Hughton] about him. He’s doing people’s heads in.”
Not a completely unreasonable sentiment perhaps, and if Klopp were the manager of, let’s say, Manchester United, his conduct might elicit a few strong reactions from Liverpool supporters. But while Klopp is perhaps the most visible (and probably the most animated) fist-pumper and gurner among the Premier League’s managerial set, he’s far from the only one, and if nothing else, he does bring a little bit of character to the sidelines.
At least he’s not doing a Pardew dance, OK? There’s no reason for that. No reason at all.