Nottingham Forest vs Liverpool ends in chaos as chairman ‘chases ref’ after Nunez winner | Football | Sport

Nottingham Forest vs Liverpool ends in chaos as chairman ‘chases ref’ after Nunez winner | Football | Sport

Furious Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis stormed down to the pitch after Liverpool’s late winner and reportedly had to be restrained by security after confronting referee Paul Tierney in the tunnel in shocking scenes following the final whistle. It was a case of last-gasp glory for the Reds despite a lacklustre display. Jurgen Klopp‘s side won 1-0 and will stay top of the Premier League even if Manchester City win at home to Manchester United on Sunday.

In what had been a low-key clash for much of the afternoon, the hosts were left ruing Anthony Elanga’s missed first-half chance, with the winger denied by Liverpool keeper Caoimhin Kelleher – before super sub Darwin Nunez headed in a winner for the Reds in the ninth and final minute of injury time.

The Uruguayan nodded home from Alexis Mac Allister’s curling cross and prompted chaos. Seconds earlier, play had been stopped by the referee after a head injury to Ibrahima Konate inside Liverpool’s area. Forest’s Callum Hudson-Odoi was in possession but, upon the restart, Tierney instructed Liverpool to carry on – instead of ordering the ball to be played back to Forest. And it caused uproar when Nunez struck the winner just moments later.

Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis was furious at the full-time whistle and made his way down to the pitchside to wait for referee Tierney. The official was also surrounded by Forest players and coaches as the away players and fans celebrated wildly. Virgil van Dijk was caught in the centre of the drama and could be seen arguing with Forst staff members as they confronted the referee. Forest coach Steven Reid ended up being shown a red card as tempers flared in ugly scenes after the final whistle at the City Ground.

Marianakis himself was reportedly restrained as he tried to put his point across. BBC Radio Five Live reporter Rob Schofield was inside the City Ground tunnel after the match, and said: « You rarely see scenes like that in the tunnel. We saw Steven Reid getting frustrated. He and the Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis pursued referee Paul Tierney and fourth official Graham Scott all the way to referee’s office yelling at them « Respect the players! Respect the players! This happens every week! Respect the players! »

Schofield continued: « Marinakis had to be removed by security at one stage. The Forest players were furious, Nuno looked absolutely crestfallen. Jurgen Klopp stormed past me saying he doesn’t know why he’s getting so much flak. It really was all kicking off down here. Furious scenes. » However, conflicting reports claim that security were not forced to intervene. Forest, meanwhile, confirmed Marinakis did enter the referee’s room after the match but played down the incident as a ‘brief exchange’ and insisted that it wasn’t a shouting match.

Watching for Sky Sports, ex-referee Mike Dean was critical of the Forest Chairman, saying: « He shouldn’t be on the pitch. No way. And I guarantee he will be waiting for the referee in the tunnel. Shouldn’t be on the pitch. »

The unsavoury and dramatic scenes were not in-keeping with much of the game itself, with Liverpool looking lethargic against an organised Forest side. And it was the hosts who had the best chance of the first half, Anthony Elanga denied by Caoimhin Kelleher.

The Reds failed to seriously threaten, although did press forward after the break. And Nunez was brilliantly denied in injury time when his deflected shot was tipped wide by home keeper Matz Sels.

But with the eight minutes of injury time already up, Nuno Espirito Santos could only watch on as his side failed to clear a corner. Mac Allister duly returned the ball into the box, where Nunez managed to direct the ball into the bottom corner.

It prompted wild celebrations as Nunez ran towards the travelling support. And it extends Liverpool’s lead over City to four points, and completes a perfect seven days for Klopp’s side following their wins in the Carabao Cup final and FA Cup.

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