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Rodgers, Gerrard and Glen Johnson deny Suarez's 'diver' tag

After another occasion on which the striker was accused of diving to win a penalty, top Reds figures insist that the 25-year-old has earned an unfair reputation

Liverpool trio Steven Gerrard, Brendan Rodgers and Glen Johnson have urged referees to not to pre-judge Luis Suarez, following another match in which the striker was accused of diving.

The Uruguay international was booked following a collision with Manchester United defender Jonny Evans during the Reds' 2-1 defeat at Anfield on Sunday and his skipper believes that the 25-year-old has an unfair reputation for going down easily inside the penalty area.

Gerrard was, however, careful not to suggest that Suarez is completely innocent of simulation, refusing to deny that his booking for a similar offence against Sunderland was unfairly given.

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"I think even when Luis does get blatant penalties now he doesn't get them," the veteran midfielder told reporters.

"It is down to referees to not judge him and give what they see - if it's not a penalty, don't give him one but if it's clear give it.

"He was booked at Sunderland but against United it was a penalty."

Johnson echoed his skipper's sentiments, adding that a referee must make instinctive decisions and not allow any previous behaviour to fog their judgement.

"Everyone has to do their job: they have to forget about who they are looking at and make their decisions and not let anything from the past affect their decision," the full-back declared.

"They have to call the shots at the time, regardless of who it is."

Manager Brendan Rodgers agreed that diving is definitely an issue in the modern game but urged officials not to be fooled by acts of simulation - while adamantly stating that Suarez has been unfairly treated in recent weeks.

"You see it in the modern game, across the board, a number of players go to ground too easily and they get their rewards sometimes," he added.

"If you look at Luis last week away at Sunderland he goes down, there is contact but he gets booked for it then yesterday he didn't get it."

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