The fallout from Liverpool FC’s 1-0 victory against Manchester City continues. In the lead-up to the game, manager Jürgen Klopp answered a question in his pre-game presser about what Liverpool needed to do to keep pace with City. He replied that Liverpool simply couldn’t act like City, and proceeded to point out that the state-backed sports washing projects Manchester City, Paris St. Germain, and Newcastle United “can do what they want financially”.
In the wake of offensive chanting and vandalism about Hillsborough and Heysel at Anfield on Sunday, the club released a statement condemning the behaviour. Meanwhile, City have also lobbed accusations of their own - Pep Guardiola said the home fans had tried to pelt him with coins in a post-game interview, and there have been reports in the Manchester Evening News that the City bus’ windscreen was cracked when making their way out of Anfield. If true, such behaviour definitely should not be tolerated, and Liverpool has stated that an investigation into the coin-throwing is underway.
There’s one particular claim that has blown up in particular. (The article has been removed.)
Manchester City bus attacked again last night as it left Anfield. City also unhappy with Klopp’s comments in press conference last Friday https://t.co/UzSv5CeJ2n— Paul Hirst (@hirstclass) October 17, 2022
Instead of making a formal statement about anything, City elected to further deflect and brief their club-connected journalists with pushback coming from their executives. One such article making the rounds was by The Times’ Paul Hirst, where the bus attack claim was also made. A City source was reported to have told journalists that they felt Klopp “had inflamed tensions ahead of the match” and that the manager was “borderline xenophobic” in his choice of words.
It appears that Liverpool FC have now taken legal action against The Times, as an edit showing “This article is the subject of a legal complaint from Jürgen Klopp and Liverpool FC.” was added to the story, before being removed altogether.
When Klopp was asked about the counterclaim of xenophobia at his pre-match press conference against West Ham, he addressed it:
“I don’t feel, in this specific case, hit at all.”
“I know myself, and you cannot hit me with something that is miles away from my personality.”
“If I would be like this, I would hate myself.”
“How I said, a lot of times in my life I said things and they were a little bit open for misunderstanding, I know that.”
“Not intentionally, it just happens. You say something and then later you realise, ‘oh my god, that could be misunderstood like this.”
“But this is not one of these moments. It was not.”
What a ridiculous club. Good on LFC for standing up to the offensive chanting at the game, as well as this nonsensical claim of xenophobia.