What Pep Guardiola said to Mo Salah after hot-tempered Liverpool win over Man City revealed by lip reader

February 23, 2023

A lip reader believes Pep Guardiola and Mohamed Salah discussed a refereeing decision after Liverpool‘s 1-0 win against Manchester City at Anfield on Sunday afternoon.

Guardiola and Salah were filmed speaking to each other at the full-time whistle and fans have speculated as to what the two discussed. It’s unclear what Liverpool’s talismanic forward said because his mouth was covered, but Guardiola’s was not.

Professional lip reader John Cassidy has studied the footage and thinks Guardiola told Salah: “Have a good season, good game, you too, what’s up? [hidden behind Salah]… There’s no doubt about it, not maybe – definite. It’s definite, definite.”

Guardiola may have been discussing City’s disallowed goal. Phil Foden‘s second-half strike was chalked off after the VAR official noticed a foul from Erling Haaland on Fabinho in the build-up. The Norwegian was judged to have pulled his opponent to the ground.

The game was goalless at that point, as Liverpool went on to win thanks to a stunning goal from Salah. The Egyptian pounced on Alisson’s long ball forward by spinning Joao Cancelo, his marker, and confidently slotting the ball beyond goalkeeper Ederson.

Speaking after the game, Guardiola criticised Anthony Taylor‘s decision to award a foul. The referee allowed plenty of questionable tackles to go unpunished – including Bernardo Silva‘s late challenge on Salah that led to Jurgen Klopp being sent off in protest.

“The referee came to the coaches [before the game] and said play on, play on,” Guardiola told Sky Sports. “There were a million fouls. But after we scored a goal, he decided it is not play on. This is Anfield.”

City playmaker Silva added: “What we expect from the referees is consistency in the decisions and when you go through a path of not whistling little contacts throughout the whole game, you need to keep those decisions and keep going that way.

“If you want to whistle all of them, whistle all of them, but if from the beginning of the game you’re not – he was letting us play which is good – then if there’s a goal you cannot whistle that soft one.

“If you want consistency from the referee you cannot change just because there’s a goal and just because it’s a tough decision, you have to make the tough decision and keep the goal.”

Responding to Guardiola’s comments, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said: “I heard now that people said it was Anfield that made the VAR decision… It’s a foul on Fabinho, I think we agree on that. Is it not enough to pull somebody down?”

Foden’s disallowed goal has split opinions among pundits and support   ers. Jamie Carragher added: “I agreed with everything Bernardo Silva said. The referee did let a lot go… When you look at it in slow motion it looks worse. It’s a 50-50 one. There is a shirt tug, whether Fabinho was going down already only Fabinho knows.”


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