Cape Town – Everton manager Sam Allardyce admits the referee had to be courageous to award them a penalty in the 1-1 draw with Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday.
The 229th Merseyside derby ended all-square after Wayne Rooney cancelled out Mohamed Salah's 42nd-minute opener for the hosts, who had bossed proceedings.
Rooney scored his first derby goal in the 77th minute from 12 yards out, after Dejan Lovren was adjudged to have fouled Dominic Calvert-Lewin inside the box.
Reds manager Jurgen Klopp was incensed by Craig Pawson's decision to point to the spot, but Allardyce felt the match official made the right call.
"We needed just one opportunity and that opportunity came from a penalty," Big Sam told Sky Sports.
"The referee has to be brave to give a decision like that.
"I have looked at it, and he [Dejan Lovren] has pushed him, but we have seen ones like that before where it has been difficult for the referee to give it.
"He [Pawson] did give it, and Wayne Rooney has put it away.
"At the end of the day, some you get and some you don't. I have had a look at it and I think it is a penalty.
"There is no such thing as a soft penalty. If you ask [referee's chief] Mike Riley there is no such thing.
"He [Lovren] has either impeded or stopped our player in the box from trying to score."