Fulham boss rues ‘silly’ Riether challenge

Fulham boss Rene Meulensteen was left to rue the “silly” challenge by Sascha Riether that handed Liverpool a dramatic 3-2 victory at Craven Cottage.

A win would have lifted Fulham off the bottom of the Premier League and they led twice in a pulsating match.

But Philippe Coutinho levelled and Steven Gerrard netted from the penalty spot in the final minute after Riether had needlessly brought down Daniel Sturridge.

Meulensteen said: “It was just a silly challenge that shouldn’t have been made. The first thing he admitted was that he shouldn’t have done it.”

Buoyed by Sunday’s 2-2 draw at Manchester United, Fulham dominated much of the first half and defended resolutely in the second before Riether’s late error.

“We definitely deserved at least a point. We got our noses in front and played well,” Meulensteen insisted.

“We didn’t let them get into any rhythm and they didn’t cause us too much danger in the first half really – the first goal came out of nothing.

“We took our chance to go 2-1 up but again you see what a team in our position does, which is to try to hold on and drop a little deeper.

“We gave Coutinho too much space and at 2-2 they pressed for another goal and got it.”

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