In pictures: Toulouse v Liverpool
Darwin Nunez struggled to hide his frustrations after the full-time whistle as Liverpool were beaten by Toulouse in the Europa League group stages. The Reds went two goals down before finally kicking into gear but it was too little, too late to snatch a result as they missed out on confirming their place in the knockout stages.
Toulouse went in at the break with a one-goal lead following Aron Donnum’s opener before Thijs Dallinga doubled their advantage in the second half. Liverpool went on to halve the deficit thanks to an own goal from Cristian Casseres Jr but Frank Magri’s strike with 14 minutes remaining sealed all three points for the hosts.
Diogo Jota scored Liverpool’s second goal of the match late on before Jarell Quansah was denied a stoppage-time equaliser by a controversial VAR decision. It meant the Reds were condemned to their first defeat in the Europa League this season, leaving Nunez visibly furious after the final whistle.
The Liverpool striker was clearly not in the mood for post-match handshakes, with his anger getting the better of him when it came to exchanging pleasantries with Toulouse scorer Magri. The latter was following the customary procedure of shaking his opponents’ hands and offered to do so with Nunez, but the Reds ace snatched his hand away out of frustration before trudging down the tunnel.
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Nunez was introduced off the bench in the second half but struggled to have much of an impact on the game as Liverpool produced arguably their worst performance of the season. Jurgen Klopp’s side were poor throughout the match and were ultimately forced to settle for only their second defeat of the campaign in all competitions.
They looked to have earned a draw in stoppage time when Quansah fired home in the dying seconds before the goal was ruled out following a VAR intervention for a handball by Alexis Mac Allister in the build-up. Klopp bemoaned the decision in his post-match interview but insisted that he was more concerned by Liverpool’s overall performance, which he admitted was not deserving of a positive result.
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He said: “I only saw the video back now and for me it’s not a handball, but how can I decide that? The ball goes to the chest and then I don’t see contact with the arm, to be honest. Maybe they had a different picture than I had. It was pretty long ago before we scored the goal and I thought, ‘Where is the free-kick?’
“I didn’t see it properly but I heard there could have been a penalty for us in another situation. I don’t know. Actually, I am a bit more concerned about [the fact that] I would have loved us to have played better, to be honest. That’s my main issue tonight. In a football way [we need to be] more aggressive.”
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