Newcastle should not have stopped before Jota equaliser, says Cole

Newcastle should have played to the whistle with Isaac Hayden down in build-up to Diogo Jota’s equaliser, insists Joe Cole… as Jermaine Jenas admits he can ‘understand’ why Mike Dean chose NOT to disallow Liverpool forward’s goal

  • Isaac Hayden went down after challenging for a header from a Liverpool corner 
  • The Newcastle midfielder was down as Reds recycled the ball and then scored 
  • Diogo Jota had his header saved but netted on the rebound to equaliser for Reds 
  • Mike Dean allowed goal to stand and Joe Cole and Jermaine Jenas back decision 

Joe Cole admitted he ‘felt’ for Newcastle after Diogo Jota’s equaliser for Liverpool was allowed to stand – but criticised their defenders for not taking ‘ownership’ of the situation.

Former Reds midfielder Jonjo Shelvey gave the Magpies a surprise lead inside seven minutes at Anfield but Eddie Howe’s men were pegged back when Jota equalised at the second attempt.

But it arrived in controversial circumstances, with Isaac Hayden going down after going up for a challenge from a Liverpool corner.

Joe Cole criticised Newcastle’s players for not playing to the whistle in the build-up to Liverpool’s equaliser

Diogo Jota was found at the backpost by Sadio Mane and his header was saved by the keeper

The midfielder stayed down as the hosts recycled the ball, with Sadio Mane crossing for Jota to fire home from close ranger after his header was saved. 

Newcastle players and boss Howe were left furious that played was not stopped given that it appeared to be a head injury, with referee Mike Dean allowing the goal to stand.

But speaking to BT Sport, former Reds star Cole said the visitors looked ‘disjointed’ when they have players down and accused them of not fulfilling their defensive responsibilities with Hayden down. 

‘I feel for them there, it is a head injury,’ Cole said. ‘Mike Dean has a decision to make. One thing that is sacrilege as a footballer is that as a young kid you are told to play to the whistle.

‘Newcastle seem a little bit disjointed when they have players down, a couple of them looking at the referee, they don’t pick up the man and then they get punished.

But on the rebound, the Portuguese forward made no mistake and beat Martin Dubravka

But Magpies star Isaac Hayden was down since the initial corner, seemingly with a head injury

‘I felt sorry for them at that point, but the players have to take responsibility and ownership at that point.’

Fellow pundit Jermaine Jenas also admitted it was a ‘tough call’ for referee Dean to make, but insisted he ‘understood’ why the goal was allowed to stand. 

‘As a player and Eddie Howe, I get it,’ ex-Tottenham midfielder Jenas said. ‘It is a head injury, but it was very quick and it was right on the edge of the box, and I can understand Mike Dean’s decision.

Cole (left) and Jermaine Jenas (right) admitted they felt for Newcastle but understood why decision was made

‘It was a tough call, and in the end it was probably the right one. He has taken a knock but you just don’t know how bad it was. It is the referee’s call, it’s down to him at the end of the day.’

The Reds then took the lead four minutes later, with Mohamed Salah netting on the rebound after Mane’s weak effort was saved by Martin Dubravka.

The Egyptian therefore became just the second player in Premier League history after Jamie Vardy to provide a goal or an assist in 15 consecutive Premier League appearances.

Mohamed Salah then equalled a Premier League record to put the Reds in front at Anfield

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