Aaron Cresswell went unpunished for an off-the-feet lunge on Jordan Henderson during the thrilling Premier League encounter between West Ham United and Liverpool
Jordan Henderson’s lack of theatrics helped Aaron Cresswell avoid a red card for his “reckless” challenge during Liverpool’s 3-2 defeat at West Ham United.
That is the verdict of former Reds midfielder Jamie Redknapp, who could not fathom why the Irons defender was not sent off just eight minutes into the Premier League fixture.
Cresswell lunged in on Henderson just outside the area and was off his feet as he made contact with the Liverpool captain’s knee despite winning the ball.
While Referee Craig Pawson did not blow for a foul, Sky Sports commentator Jamie Carragher suspected a VAR check could land Cresswell in hot water.
However, the 31-year-old went unpunished in a decision Redknapp believes was “very lucky” for David Moyes’ side.
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The pundit gave his verdict on the challenge at half-time and claimed Henderson’s failure to “roll around” on the floor was a “favour” for Cresswell.
“Eight minutes into the game, I hate to see players get sent off but that is a reckless challenge,” Redknapp said.
“You have to look at it. His foot is high. It is aggressive. I’ve seen players get sent off for a lot less than that.
“What does help him is that Jordan Henderson got up so quickly – he did him a right favour. It was an aggressive challenge.
“Yeah [Cresswell should’ve been sent off], definitely. If it had been given as a red there wouldn’t have been any complaints whatsoever.
“Sometimes it just helps you have someone who gets up quickly. If they stay down, roll around, then it could be different. I think he was very lucky, Cresswell.”
Liverpool players were incensed by the decision not to send Cresswell off and they confronted Pawson after he blew the full-time whistle.
The two teams went into the interval at 1-1 as Trent Alexander-Arnold’s stunning free kick cancelled out Alisson’s own-goal.
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Jurgen Klopp’s players were also aggrieved about the nature of the opening goal, as they felt the Brazilian goalkeeper was fouled by Angelo Ogbonna before brushing a corner into his own net.
Alisson was also in the spotlight as Pablo Fornals fired past him to restore West Ham’s lead midway through the second half.
The Irons increased their advantage through Kurt Zouma, who nodded in Jarrod Bowen’s corner, before substitute Divock Origi pulled a goal back for Liverpool.
The result saw West Ham leapfrog the Reds to go third in the Premier League table.