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Jurgen Klopp bites back at Mark Clattenburg over referee mind games jibe

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The Liverpool boss brought up the amount of penalties his side are awarded compared to United (Picture: Getty Images)

Jurgen Klopp has responded to Mark Clattenburg’s claims he has attempted to influence referees ahead of Liverpool’s clash against Manchester United on Sunday.

The former Premier League official took issue with Klopp highlighting how many more penalties rivals United have been given compared to the Reds over his reign at the Merseyside club.

Clattenburg also said it was hypocritical of Klopp to suggest Red Devils players are attempting to fool referees, though he believes that United did receive more favourable decisions during Sir Alex Ferguson’s tenure at Old Trafford.

Klopp goes up against Solskjaer this weekend at Anfield (Picture: Getty Images)

‘He sounds like a hypocrite if he is suggesting United’s players are looking to win penalties,’ Clattenburg wrote in his column for MailOnline earlier this week.

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‘The likes of Mo Salah and Mane are just as capable of employing similar tactics.

‘He is clearly getting edgy, though, because not since Fergie have we seen such a blatant attempt to influence a referee ahead of a big game.

‘But he is wrong to suggest there is an aura around United that sees them given favourable decisions. There used to be when Fergie was there, but that has eased massively since he left.’

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When asked about Clattenburg’s claims ahead of the United showdown, Klopp completely dismissed any suggestions that he is playing mind games in order to influence referees for this weekend’s crunch clash at Anfield.

He said: ‘Am I surprised that somebody is talking about what I said after the Southampton game? No. I’m not.

‘Am I surprised that Mark Clattenburg speaks about it? No.

‘I’m not sure if he got asked a lot of things meanwhile long after his career, so it’s nice for him that we can talk about him as well, so I’m not.

‘But I’m not Sir Alex for different reasons than he said, he tried something and mind games.

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‘I was directly after Southampton in this moment between this game and the United game, and I didn’t think a second about the United game in that moment.

‘But before the Southampton game I saw the stats about the penalties and that’s what I mentioned.

‘When people like Mark Clattenburg are speaking like they speak, it always says much more about them than it could ever say about me.

‘If he would be in my situation he would obviously play mind games. I’m unfortunately not, I have no skills for playing mind games that’s my problem.’

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