Liverpool fans reacts to Polish referee Szymon Marciniak’s performance
The Wanda Metropolitano is a place that has a special mention in Liverpool folklore. This is the same stadium where the Reds won their sixth European crown just eight months ago.
It will, at least for today, be remembered for being the venue for Liverpool’s most frustrating performance of the season so far.
Atletico was always going to be the antithesis of Jurgen Klopp’s Reds and the Spaniards did well to restrict Liverpool to chances that were mostly obscure at best. The Reds dominated possession but could not breach Diego Simeone’s defence, so much so that Jan Oblak did not have a save to make.
Apart from the performance of the players, the match official’s calling also came in for debate among the Liverpool faithful.
Atletico were the recipients of a number of favorable calls that did not go well with the Reds. Many fans felt that the match official was too happy to blow the whistle and made a number of half calls or non-fouls in favor of the Spaniards.
The referee for the game was Szymon Marciniak from Poland. He has previously officiated three matches involving Liverpool. One was the 1-0 victory over Besiktas in the Europa League in 2015, the others were the 7-0 win over Spartak Moscow in 2017 and the 2-1 loss to PSG in 2018. (h/t Liverpool Echo)
Not only did Marciniak rule out a goal and allegedly call fouls the wrong way, but he also branded Jurgen Klopp with a yellow card. The German manager received the caution for his vociferous reaction to the fourth official regarding the referee’s call.
The German hinted at his displeasure at the post-match press conference while talking about Sadio Mane being taken off.
“I was a little afraid the opponent would go down even if Sadio took a deep breath.”
An early Saul Niguez goal gave Atletico the lead with just four minutes played. The Spaniards now take this narrow lead to Anfield for the second leg to be played on the 11th of March.
A number of Liverpool fans took to Twitter to express their displeasure at the referee’s performance. We take a look at some of them below.
Twitter reacts to Szymon Marciniak’s performance
real talk though, is the referee for the atletico madrid vs liverpool even qualified to officiate matches?
— abs ` 18 (@virgilvandykc) February 18, 2020
There has to be a direct correlation between how bad a referee is and how bald they are.
Anthony Taylor and the Atletico v Liverpool ref tonight are the two immediate examples.
— Jonny Houghton (@MrJay152) February 18, 2020
Liverpool didn't play well but that referee is out of his depth. Fell for everything Atletico did
— Neil Davey (@DubsFanNeil) February 18, 2020
Atletico beat Liverpool in the first half. The referee beat Liverpool in the second half.
— Alex (@SonOfPear44) February 18, 2020
I think this referee performance in the Atletico Madrid V Liverpool game tonight is up there with Chelsea V Barcelona from years ago. The most biased refereeing you have ever seen.
— tdyerwestfield #JFT96 (@DyerThomas) February 18, 2020
Liverpool lose 1-0. Atletico were very difficult to play against for numerous reasons. Referee fell for all their “dark arts” tricks also. Second leg at Anfield very much favors Liverpool even down 1-0 at the start
— Justyn™ (@justyn_lfc) February 18, 2020
Just watched the Atletico vs Liverpool game referee was disgraceful haven't seen a performance like this in a while from a ref. everything seemed so much against liverpool
— jake sanders (@mini_gizmo) February 18, 2020
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Liverpool were not at their best. Atletico defenced brilliantly, but referee second rate.
— Charlie Weston (@CWeston_Indo) February 18, 2020
don't mind Liverpool losing tonight but that referee is a total idiot. let Atletico dive about all game and blew up for every minor foul that an LFC player made. Actually hate European officials. a bunch of wet-wipes.
— Oliver Madden (@Madden1Oliver) February 18, 2020