Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has vented his frustration at referee Michael Oliver for not giving the Reds the opportunity to change their defensive system before Chelsea equalised and seemed to take a swipe at Antonio Conte over the Blues' approach to the 1-1 draw at Anfield on Saturday (25 November).
Both the Reds and the Premier League champions had to settle for a share of the spoils after Willian's late chip cancelled out Mohamed Salah's smart finish, but Klopp was left fuming with Oliver, who he feels did not let his side introduce Adam Lallana at the opportune moment.
Lallana was ready to make his return from a thigh injury but did not come on until after Willian had equalised for Chelsea, who went behind when Tiemoue Bakayoko's daft mistake played in Salah, who made no mistake to score his 15th goal in just his 20th game for Liverpool.
Klopp was frustrated and bewildered by referee Oliver's apparent refusal to let Liverpool bring on Lallana when they initially wanted and insisted that Willian's strike would not have occurred if he was allowed to change his system and implement a five-man defence.
"I was angry [after Willian's equaliser]," Klopp said after the match, per Football.London. "We wanted to change the system and the referee didn't let us. I wanted to change to five at the back and it could have helped a lot, it was where Willian was with the ball when he scored.
"Maybe ask the ref, we wanted to change the player. But it didn't happen. In my mind Klavan would have been there when Willian crossed the ball. I don't know why the ref said no. It didn't make the feeling much better."
Klopp also saw fit to take a dig at Chelsea for their set-up, even though Conte's side created the better openings and perhaps just edged the contest: "It's a little bit more difficult when Chelsea played with eight defenders more or less."
Conte understandably took issue with Klopp's comments about his team's style of play, and suggested that Liverpool were in fact "lucky" to come away with a point.
"I think we played in a really good way, a tactical play and I think for Liverpool it was difficult to make chances to score and it was a tactical decision to be in the first half very solid," Conte said. "The game changed in the second half and we dominated the game. Liverpool were lucky to score and draw."