Darwin Nunez was in no mood to shake hands with the opposition after Liverpool’s poor 3-2 defeat in their Europa League match against Toulouse on Thursday evening.
The striker failed to get on the scoresheet on a difficult night for Jurgen Klopp’s side as they failed to match the home side’s firepower.
Despite a late surge that saw the Reds fight back from 2-0 down thanks to a Cristian Casseres Jnr own goal and a Diogo Jota strike a minute from time, Liverpool could not take their share of points on the road in controversial circumstances.
Klopp’s side were once again embroiled in late VAR drama with Jarell Quansah’s leveler sent off in extra-time due to handball by Alexis Mac Allister at the very start of the build-up.
After a lengthy decision-making process, the academy graduate was denied what would have been his first senior goal in red – and the team was given the opportunity to cement their position at the top of Group E.
Darwin Nunez rebuffed the outstretched hand of Toulouse striker Frank Magri at full-time
Magri did not appear to believe Nunez’s gesture after the 3-2 defeat to Liverpool on Thursday evening
But the striker was delighted after the home win and shook hands with the referee instead
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Liverpool’s frustration after the final whistle was evident, but few players showed it as vividly as the striker, who deflected Frank Magri’s attempt with a short jerk of his arm.
Nunez’s teammate Mohamed Salah had earlier accepted a handshake from the beaming player, who looked unbothered as he moved on to shake hands with referee Georgi Kabakov and his team.
Fans on social media were divided at full-time over the player’s behaviour, with some believing the gesture indicated the Uruguayan international’s passion.
However, some argued that Nunez was wrong and should have accepted Magri’s conciliatory move.
“Liverpool is a big club,” wrote one commentator. “Their players should have been trained to respect their opponent and have good sportsmanship.”
Another said: ‘A sore loser. Not a good example for growing children. Disgraceful behavior’.
A third added: ‘Right in front of the camera. Terrible acting, very cringeworthy.”
The Uruguayan striker was undoubtedly disappointed that Liverpool could not claim a draw
Academy prospect Jarell Quansah came close with a final goal that was later disallowed
Alexis Mac Allister was found guilty of handball by the VAR at the start of the build-up
Tottenham’s Yves Bissouma was in a similar vein after Chelsea’s chaotic 4-1 defeat to Ange Postecoglou’s side on Monday night, but opponent Conor Gallagher’s reaction was a far cry from Magri’s relaxed attitude.
The Chelsea midfielder was outraged by Bissouma’s rejection of the peace offer and took on the player, prompting Marc Cucurella and Oliver Skipp to quickly push their way between the two men to defuse the tension.
Despite defeat in France on Thursday, Liverpool remain in pole position to qualify as leaders of their group and reach the knockout stages.
Klopp’s men will have another chance to seal qualification at the end of November when they welcome LASK to Anfield.
IT’S ALL GOING OFF!