Bernardo Silva has used an iconic Jose Mourinho phrase to avoid talking about the VAR controversy during Manchester City’s defeat to Premier League title rivals Liverpool.
City were poor at Anfield as goals from Fabinho, Mo Salah and Sadio Mane saw Liverpool extend their lead in the Premier League over City to nine points.
Bernardo had pulled a goal back with 10 minutes remaining, but City could not build on that and left Anfield with nothing.
Things might have gone differently for City had they been awarded a penalty 22 seconds before Fabinho rifled Liverpool ahead. The ball had ricocheted off Bernardo, onto his hand and then onto the outstretched arm of Trent Alexander-Arnold. As City appealed for a penalty, Liverpool travelled up the other end and scored the opener.
However, manager Pep Guardiola wouldn’t be drawn on the incident – plus two or three other potential penalty shouts – as he avoided questions on the referees.
Likewise, Bernardo was not in any mood to comment on the officiating of the game, choosing to echo the phrase made iconic by Jose Mourinho last season when he was still manager of Manchester United – ‘I prefer not to speak.’
“I have not seen it yet,” he told Sky Sports. “You guys should analyse it not me. If I speak I will be in trouble. I don’t want to speak. I have not watched it.”
Expanding on the game, Bernardo said City played well against a quality side, but might have brought defeat upon themselves.
“I think we played one of the best sides in the world, it’s never easy in a stadium like Anfield,” the Portuguese said.
“We had started better than them when we conceded the first goal. First counter, first goal, you cannot give them an inch, because if you do they will take it and score goals.
“It was a good performance but we want to win. Most teams may think they are playing better than Liverpool then at half-time you are losing two or three nil. It’s how they play, they are one of the best counter attacking teams in the world.”
Reflecting on the title race, Bernardo sent a warning to Liverpool as he vowed City would not give up their title easily.
“Congratulations to Liverpool,” he continued. “We’ll fight until the end. We’ve been in this position last season, we will never give up. We’re only in November and they still have to play at the Etihad and there are plenty of games to play.
“We are not in the ideal position, or the one we’d want to be we have to improve.”