A hard one to stomach for Liverpool fans
Tony Pulis’ post match interview on Sunday afternoon was particularly hard to stomach for Liverpool fans.
The Welshman stood in front of the camera’s, clearly eager to get something off his chest. “I was disappointed with the number of bookings we received, and thought Liverpool should have had some more of their players cautioned.”
As soon as he was given the slightest push as to who he thought should of been carded, the Stoke boss launched an angry tirade against Luis Suarez for diving, in a rant that anybody who saw Sunday’s match will know, screamed hypocrisy.
“I’ve been on about and banging the drum about people who fall over,” said Pulis. “It’s an embarrassment. The FA should be looking at this.”
Pulis than had the audacity to claim Suarez should receive a three match ban, in a bid to stop him from “falling over.”
This is the same man who two weeks ago was praising Peter Crouch for scoring against Manchester City, despite a blatant handball in the build up.
Suarez was cheating to get an advantage for his team in the same way Crouch had done, something Pulis had advocated just 14 days previously.
Don’t get me wrong, the Suarez dive on Sunday was pathetic and it is something that needs to be stamped out of the game. Gareth Bale’s wasn’t much better on the same day, and it is fast becoming ridiculous.
But Pulis had clearly instructed his side to kick lumps out of Suarez all game, and the Uruguayan striker got little to no protection from referee Lee Mason.
Within four minutes Robert Huth had made a clear stamp that left a mark behind on the strikers chest. Mason ignored it, and despite video evidence there will be no retrospective punishment.
This was not just an isolated incident, Huth continued to cynically foul the Liverpool number seven at any given opportunity, and it remains a mystery as to how he stayed on the pitch.
The same could be said for many of Stoke’s players. Everyone knows they are a physical side, and they get results from playing to their strengths.
But Sunday was particularly brutal, with smaller, young players such as Raheem Sterling, Joe Allen and Suso being targeted time and again alongside Suarez.
Listening to Tony Pulis take the moral high ground after watching his players kick lumps out of Liverpool for 90 minutes was simply unbelievable.
One of the things most people want stamped out of the game is the fake card brandishing we see from players in an attempt to get others sent off.
Pulis has done exactly the same thing from the safety of his post match press conference, and should focus his energy on looking at his own players thuggery before criticizing Suarez.
It is especially disappointing as everyone knows Suarez is an easy target, and Pulis has simply jumped on the bandwagon to disrupt one of the most exciting if not controversial talents in the Premier League, something that is far to easy to do.
Whilst what Suarez did was wrong, you feel for him to some extent and saw it as an act of desperation after being kicked from pillar to post by Huth and co all afternoon, and continue to be ignored by the referee. Lee Mason actually laughed at his appeals following the Huth stamp.
There was no word from Pulis’ counter part Brendan Rodgers on the incident.
“They are a bunch of big men who make it difficult for you and there is no right or wrong way to play football,” he said.
“What I was proud of is our young guys stood up to that. It was a physical game but no complaints from us.”
Rodgers take on the game has just made Pulis look all the more foolish.
I am not sure when the Stoke boss became the spokesperson for fair play in the Premier League, especially since his side have finished bottom of the fair play league three times in the last six seasons.
It would be nice to see an apology for his words and his own players actions on Sunday. But following his delusional comments on several occasions this season, it seems about as likely as a game going by without Luis Suarez making the headlines.
What do you think of Tony Pulis’ words? Is he being hypocritical or does he have a point? Follow me on Twitter @LukeGreenwood89 and let me know your thoughts.