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Rio Ferdinand labels Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta ‘naive’ after spat with Jurgen Klopp


Mikel Arteta may have learned a lesson at Anfield on Saturday (Picture: Getty Images)

Rio Ferdinand believes Mikel Arteta showed his naivety at the weekend when the Arsenal manager got involved in a heated spat with Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp on the Anfield touchline.

With the game goalless the two managers become enraged over seemingly very little, with Arteta furious in a rare show of emotion, remonstrating with Klopp.

Both were shown yellow cards for their actions but it was likely only Arteta who regretted the clash as the atmosphere at Anfield intensified and Liverpool stepped on the gas, eventually running out comfortable 4-0 winners.

Ferdinand believes sparking up a fiery atmosphere at Liverpool was an avoidable mistake from the Gunners boss and he showed his naivety by doing so.

‘I watched the game and Liverpool just turned the screw. They turned the screw after Arteta and Klopp’s spat on the touchline, that Arteta started,’ Ferdinand told Vibe with FIVE.

‘That was naive, for me. At Anfield you don’t want to be gassing up that crowd and whipping them up.

Jurgen Klopp and Mikel Arteta got into a heated exchange on the Anfield touchline (Picture: EPA)

‘You have a go at Klopp the way you do when you’re 1 or 2-0 up, not when you’re still in the game and the game’s on a knife edge.

‘I think that was a little bit of naivety on Arteta’s behalf.

‘I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt because he’s a young manager so I think he’ll learn from that.’

Arteta was uncharacteristically emotional in the spat with Klopp (Picture: Reuters)

The incident was sparked by a challenge by Sadio Mane on Takehiro Tomiyasu which Arteta was furious about, but Klopp saw little wrong with.

The Arsenal manager explained: ‘He (Klopp) was trying to defend his side, I was trying to defend mine and that’s it.

‘For me, all these incidents stay there (on the pitch), they’re part of … the way we would like to compete.

‘It was just an action (by Mane) and I try to defend my players and that’s what I did.’

Klopp had no sympathy, in fact saying he is ‘sick’ of complaints made about Mane and the way he challenges.

‘It was a completely clean situation, nothing happened, two players jumped in the air and didn’t touch each other, really, at least not like a foul,’ Klopp said.

‘The bench of Arsenal went up and I asked: “What do you want from that?”. There was no contact really, but it looked like everybody wanted a red card.

‘I am really sick of these situations, where everybody tries to go for Sadio in these moments. He is a physical player, obviously, he does make hard fouls.

‘We had to take Sadio off against Atletico [Madrid in the Champions League] because they wanted him to get a yellow card.

‘The referee did really well in that situation – I deserved a yellow card. It wasn’t not OK and that is what I said. It just happened in the moment.’


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