'We win on dignity' claims Carragher as Mourinho damns direct Liverpool

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The Independent Football

The Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher was incensed when his 56th-minute header struck William Gallas on the arm but did not result in a penalty. However, he refused to dwell on the incident after the game, saying there was a dignity about the European champions that does not exist at Chelsea, following claims from Jose Mourinho that Liverpool were not worthy Champions' League winners.

The Chelsea manager continued to throw barbed comments in Liverpool's direction last night, claiming the purchase of Peter Crouch had turned them into a long-ball team, but on the balance of play at Anfield and in the context of the decision by the Italian referee Massimo De Santis to dismiss at least one strong appeal for a penalty, it was Carragher's comments that carried more weight.

"It was definitely a penalty," he said. "They were crying about various things before the game. We have a bit more dignity about us at this club and we won't cry too much about what happened in this game."

"It was clear, no? Unbelievable," offered Liverpool's manager, Rafael Benitez, which by his standards was a blistering attack. "When you play against a big team the small details make all the difference and that was a big detail," Benitez said.

Liverpool also had penalty appeals dismissed for a trip by Didier Drogba on Sami Hyypia and when Luis Garcia was tugged by Paulo Ferreira, as Benitez's team became the first to deny Chelsea victory this season.

"It is one more point," Benitez added. "Chelsea are a good team but I think we lost two points. I thought we were better than them."

Mourinho insisted only those who favoured a more direct style of play could be satisfied with the contest. "A good game?" Mourinho queried. "It depends on what you love in football. It was very competitive and very close and very tight.

"There was not a lot of space to play in midfield, there was a lot of power in there. Hamann, Gerrard and Alonso are strong, Makelele, Lampard and Essien are also powerful, so the fight was in that area.

"Then they also used Crouch. Some like him, some don't, some criticise direct play, some love it. As an opponent we don't have to like or dislike it, just cope with it and we did that fantastically. They didn't create many dangers with that direct style they use now."