Luton Town vs Liverpool in pictures
Jurgen Klopp was quick to remind the world that Luiz Diaz’s pain continues even after he paid tribute to his kidnapped father following Liverpool’s late equaliser against Luton. The Colombian’s late goal after coming in as a substitute earned the Reds a 1-1 draw and he pulled up a shirt saying “Libertad Para Papa” which translates to “Freedom for dad”.
“It was wonderful and emotional and fantastic, but the real problem is not sorted because of that,” Klopp said. “We wanted to give – and he wanted it as well – Lucho an opportunity to be a bit distracted from the other things.
“He cannot do anything, he is waiting all the time and the family is waiting all the time for news. We’re supporting him and feeling his pain but for him it’s a different level.
“Football can bring joy to someone who is struggling. Football is bringing joy to Luis at this moment. I understand it’s a nice story and super positive and great for him, but these things go by. The real information we need is different information.
“It says a lot about his character and inner strength. I can’t imagine what he’s going through.” Diaz issued a statement post-match that read: “Today the soccer player is not speaking to you, today Lucho Diaz, the son of Luis Manuel Diaz, is speaking to you. Mane my dad is a tireless worker, our pillar in the family and he is kidnapped.
“I ask the ELN for the prompt release of my dad, and I ask international organidations to intercede for his freedom. Every second every minute our anguish grows. My mother, my brothers and I are desperate, distressed and without words to describe what we are feeling. This suffering will only end when we have him back home.
“I beg you to release him immediately, respecting his integrity and ending this painful wait as soon as possible. In the name of love and compassion, we ask that you reconsider your actions and allow us to recover him.
“I thank Colombians and the international community for the support received, thank you for so many demonstrations of love and solidarity in this difficult time that many families in my country find themselves living.”
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Tahith Chong had put Luton in front in the 80th minute – the first time in the club’s history they had been in front in the Premier League at Kenilworth Road. “I feel pride,” manager Rob Edwards said. “Mixed emotions because when you are leading and it goes to that stage of the game you want to see it out. But I am immensely proud of the whole club tonight.
“We pushed a top, top team all the way and we can take a lot of confidence from that.” On a sour note, though, chanting from Luton fans which seemed to reference the Hillsborough disaster is likely to be investigated by the FA.
Sky Sports commentator Jamie Carragher said: “I have just heard something a couple of times in this game. Supporters have got to have rivalry but we are better than that.” Klopp added: “Shame on everybody who sang on it, but I didn’t hear it.” Edwards meanwhile said: “I didn’t hear it but I will find out.”
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