Tottenham 2-1 Liverpool
Goals: Son 36′, Matip OG 90+6′; Gakpo 45+5′
Sent-off: Jones 27′, Jota 69′
Down to nine men after the dismissals of Curtis Jones and Diogo Jota, the Reds looked on course for what would have been a remarkably valuable point after Cody Gakpo cancelled out Son Heung-min’s opener on the stroke of half-time.
However, Joel Matip put through his own net at the death to hand the points to Spurs to extend their unbeaten start.
Here, we take a look at five talking points from what was an unfortunate defeat.
Liverpool in a different league to Spurs
It will no doubt be incredibly difficult for Klopp and his players to find the positives after defeat in such heartbreaking circumstances.
But make no mistake, this game was yet more proof that they are more likely to find themselves engaged in a title challenge this season than scrapping with Tottenham for fourth.
For all the hype around Spurs coming into this fixture, Liverpool were the dominant force on their own patch right up until Jones’ sending off.
And the way they continued to match the hosts and create chances in the aftermath of the first red card showed exactly who the superior team was.
Even once down to nine men, Klopp’s side evidenced a togetherness and nous that hints they are destined for great things this campaign.
Losing hurts, but not quite as much when it is so easy to see that it has been inflicted on such a promising team.
Questions must be asked over red card tally
When a team that had previously topped the Premier League fair play table in five consecutive seasons under its current manager gets four red cards inside just seven games, you have to ask what has changed.
No, it isn’t that Jurgen Klopp‘s side have suddenly become incredibly dirty, or that they are the victims of some grand refereeing conspiracy (as tempting as it might be to believe that).
But it should be clear to everyone at the PGMOL that something isn’t quite right in terms of the decisions that Liverpool have been subject to so far this season.
Jones was hugely unfortunate to see red for a foul in which a wet ball was more culpable than him and, while Diogo Jota‘s second yellow was a moment of madness, the first was a simply ludicrous call.
Can the Reds expect to start receiving the rub of the green at some point?
Injury to impressive Gakpo a concern
In big away fixtures like this, the Dutchman’s intelligent pressing and careful use of possession tend to be utterly vital.
And, as he proved before his unfortunate early withdrawal, he also knows exactly where the back of the net is.
For these reasons, Klopp will have his fingers crossed that Gakpo’s knock is not a serious one; he has been as important as any player to what remains a strong start to the season.
Phenomenal Matip deserved better end
It was a big call from Klopp to go with an experienced head in Matip ahead of the fit-again and more pacey Ibrahima Konate for this one.
And, though his late own goal proved to be the decisive moment, that surely should not take away from the fact that the former Cameroon international fully justified his selection with a fine performance.
The 10 clearances he made across the 90 minutes are testament to his knack of being in the right place at the right time as Liverpool hung on, and the five aerials he won underline just how dominant he was throughout.
Here, the focus might well be on that unfortunate contribution at the end but, like so many Liverpool players, Matip deserves to leave the capital with his head held high.
And if this is to be his last season wearing the famous red, then it looks like he is determined to leave having shown the best of himself once again.
More to come on Diaz ‘goal’?
Something didn’t quite feel right about the speed with which a brilliant Luis Diaz first-half strike was ruled out for what looked like a marginal offside.
It was only last week that VAR almost made an absolute howler in nearly chalking off a Brentford goal against Everton by focusing on the wrong phase of play before that error was corrected at the last moment.
Attempts to contact the PGMOL over this matter have yet to elicit a response, which is a concern given it would surely be straightforward to reproduce the calculations that show Diaz to be beyond Cristian Romero.
Let’s hope this is not another refereeing decision that Liverpool end up rueing after an afternoon that was dominated by them.