Unraveling the Controversial History between Andy Robertson, Liverpool, and the Linesman Who Elbowed Him
The incident in which linesman Constantine Hatzidakis elbowed Andy Robertson in the face was shocking, but it was not their first run-in.
Hatzidakis is awaiting the outcome of an investigation into an incident during halftime of Sunday’s 2-2 draw between Liverpool and Arsenal in which he struck Robertson in the jaw.
Several angles of video show the official raising his arm at the enraged left-back as he and his teammates confronted referee Paul Tierney.
The incident appeared to be isolated, but after the game, the Mirror’s David Maddock took to Twitter to argue that “something really stinks” after a previous run-in between Robertson and the same officials.
Robertson had put Liverpool up 2-1 at Tottenham in November 2021 when he was sent off eight minutes later for a wild swing at Emerson Royal.
Jurgen Klopp was furious after the game because Harry Kane avoided a red card for a dangerous, studs-up challenge on Robertson, while a clear foul on Diogo Jota in the penalty box was waved away.
Tierney was the referee that day, and Hatzidakis was one of his assistants.
“I have no issues with any referees except you,” Klopp said to Tierney. “You’ve never played football if you don’t think this is a penalty.”
While it would be incorrect to suggest that Tierney and Hatzidakis have a vendetta against Klopp, Robertson, and Liverpool, it is a concerning coincidence.
Maddock wrote: “Is it just coincidence Tierney and his assistant Hatzidakis were involved in a bizarre officiating performance here?
“Elbow aside, they missed [a] blatant [penalty] for Salah at end.”
Hatzidakis has been a linesman for five Liverpool games this season, all while Tierney was the referee; in his career, he has overseen the Reds 32 times.
In his post-match press conference, Klopp insisted that he “didn’t see” the elbow on Robertson, but that the “pictures speak for themselves.”
The manager confirmed that he did not approach the officials during the game on Sunday for clarification on any decisions or situations.
However, PGMOL is expected to issue another statement in the near future.