Kuyt admits Mersey luck
Dirk Kuyt has admitted he was 'a bit lucky' not to have been sent off in an incident-packed 206th Merseyside derby on Saturday.
Last Updated: 21/10/07 4:37pm
Dirk Kuyt has admitted he was 'a bit lucky' to not have been sent off in an incident-packed 206th Merseyside derby on Saturday.
Liverpool won a pulsating match 2-1, with Kuyt scoring the winning penalty in the second minute of added time to add to his earlier strike from the spot.
But the Liverpool striker was lucky to still be on the pitch after receiving only a yellow card for his lunge at Phil Neville, despite protests from the Everton players and manager David Moyes.
Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez insisted Kuyt was "trying to block the ball, not connect with the player", while Kuyt himself insisted there was no malice.
The Dutchman said: "People saw the TV and said my booking looks bad. But I was just trying to make a tackle and I did not want to touch the player, and I didn't.
"Maybe I was a bit lucky, but I never had any intention of trying to hit the player, it was a yellow card and I accept that."
But Everton's veteran defender Alan Stubbs believed the lunge deserved a straight red, saying: "That was a two-footed lunge. If a player leaves the ground with both feet, that's a red card, and he gets a yellow.
"In the laws of the game if a player goes in with two feet and makes a lunge, and that is what it was, it's a red."
Stubbs was also upset that Steven Gerrard appeared to influence referee Mark Clattenburg's decision to send off Tony Hibbert for bringing the Liverpool captain down in the box.
"The referee went to book Tony Hibbert holding a yellow card, their player (Gerrard) walks past him (the referee) and it's changed to a red," said Stubbs.
The veteran defender was also upset that no penalty was awarded when Jamie Carragher appeared to haul Joleon Lescott to the ground as Everton fought for an equaliser deep into injury time.
Stubbs added: "If the referee looks at the decision again he will see the penalty appeal was right. Their lad had his arms all around Joleon, what was he supposed to do?
"And Benitez has gone on TV saying he was diving, but just look at it, that's a stone-wall penalty."