Trent Alexander-Arnold has insisted Liverpool’s focus on is on the next game, amid the ongoing VAR debate.
On Tuesday, the referees’ governing body PGMOL released audio recordings of the conversations between referee Simon Hooper, VAR Darren England and his assistant Dan Cook during Luis Diaz’s incorrectly adjudged offside goal in Saturday’s defeat to Tottenham.
Prior to the audio’s public release, Liverpool put out a statement vowing to “explore the range of options available, given the clear need for escalation and resolution”, while calling for a review into the incident.
The PGMOL are conducting an internal investigation, while England and Cook have not been selected for officiating duties in gameweek eight of the Premier League, following the blunder.
Speaking ahead of Thursday’s Europa League clash with Union Saint-Gilloise, vice-captain Alexander-Arnold admitted the decision was ‘disappointing and frustrating’ but insisted the team is looking ahead.
READ MORE: What do Liverpool actually want from VAR review and why is it important?
He said, as quoted by the Liverpool Echo: “We have spoken about things. But our focus is on the game now. There’s nothing we can do as players. We now focus on a different competition and a big three points.
“Decisions are decisions. Sometimes they go for you and sometimes against you. What happened at the weekend was very disappointing and frustrating but there’s nothing we can do as players now. The game has gone. We just have to move forward.
“We can’t control VAR as players. It’s the system in place. We have to trust the officials and hope they get the decisions right as often as possible.”
Liverpool have displayed an extraordinary ability to bounce back this season. They pulled the game back to 1-1 despite going down to ten men against Spurs – though they ultimately lost the match – and have won games despite conceding the first goal in five separate matches so far in 2023/24.
Addressing the Reds’ resilience and mentality, Alexander-Arnold said: “It’s not something you can learn, it’s something that comes from the team and the manager. The players who have been here a while, we know what it takes and we know the standard to be a successful team. Everyone has bought into it.”
Saturday’s controversy-filled defeat in London marked Liverpool’s first defeat of the season in any competition. Despite the loss after going down to nine men, Alexander-Arnold insists the Reds are ‘proud’ of their fighting display.
“Saturday was an outstanding performance in the circumstances we were in,” he said. “We are proud of what we have done.”