Loris Karius has come out fighting this week after the criticism he received after Liverpool’s defeat to Bournemouth. For some fans Karius was at fault for at least two of the four goals Bournemouth scored at Vitality Stadium.
For me though, Liverpool’s loss was more down to the team folding when the game was at 3-2 than Karius having a bad day at the office.
The so called leaders of the team weren’t there when they were needed and this invariably was Liverpool’s downfall. The fact that Dejan Lovren and Lucas Levia were muck in the centre of defence didn’t help the situation either.
After the game social media exploded, fans went on the rampage, laying the blame at individual players with both Karius and Lovren getting most of the blame for Liverpool’s defeat.
Then there was the pundits views and especially those Jamie Carragher quotes well they just added fuel to the fire. And the more I saw them as the night went on the more aggravated I personally got.
Imagine an ex professional footballer judging a player after seeing him play a total of 8 times. It’s not like Carra ever had a poor game for Liverpool or took over 7 years to establish himself as a Liverpool regular.
I’m not having a go at Carra here, heaven knows how he did well to win all he did under some of the worst Liverpool managers in the last 20 years but remember those who lived in glass houses should never throw stones.
Carra in my opinion should have known better, and kept his mouth shut, it’s not like he’s never had a bad day at the office or been part of a Liverpool team that totally collapsed after being in a winning position.
The attack on Karius wasn’t the first time he has had a go at a particular Liverpool player this season.
For me he’s starting to sound a bit bitter, bitter that his playing career is over and bitter that Liverpool have moved on without him or as someone pointed out this week, the Toffee side of him is finally coming out after being repressed for so many years while playing at Liverpool.
Karius’s form this season hasn’t been all that bad, he has kept three sheets and has made 13 saves. He makes on average 1.44 saves per game and concedes an average of 1.11 goals per game and makes 1.30 saves per goal.
In the 5 games Simon Mignolet has played this season he has no clean sheets and has made only 7 saves.
His average saves per game is higher than Karius’s at 1.60 but concedes 1.60 goals per games while making 1.00 saves per goal. Bearing all this in mind some fans are calling for Mignolet to start against West Ham at Anfield this weekend.
If memory serves me right, Manchester United’s David De Gea took 2 seasons to get used to the Premier League, fans were calling for him to be dropped but United persisted with him and now he’s on of the best goalkeepers in the league.
Stats wise this season, De Gea has played 5 more games than Karius yet his stats are only marginally better than the young Germans. He has made 7 more saves than Karius and kept a massive one more clean sheet than him.
He concedes on average 1.14 goals per game (more than Karius). While his saves per goal (1.79) and average save per goal (1.56) are better than Karius’s, I fully expect Karius’s stats to read better if not the same as De Gea’s after 14 games played.
Even Claudio Bravo at Manchester City has kept less clean sheets than Karius and has played 3 more games than the young German goalkeeper.
Liverpool fans have short memories, after 5 games they were crying out for Karius to start, even though about 5% of fans had seen him play a competitive match.
When things aren’t going well for him, what do they want to do, bin him and replace him with an error prone Mignolet.
Karius’s predicament hasn’t been helped by having the likes of Lucas and Lovren in front of him. Lucas is no centre back, he’s hardly a centre midfielder anymore.
Lovren looks lost without a strong partner beside him in defence. Last season it was Mamadou Sakho and this season it’s been Joël Matip.
Let’s hope Jürgen Klopp fixes the centre back problem in January or at least in the summer and he’ll change his mind about Lovren being an automatic starter for Liverpool.
Also having a midfielder playing left back hasn’t helped Liverpools defence. While no one can argue Milner is doing a somewhat decent job at left back, it’s not his natural position and at times opposition teams have exposed this.
I have no doubt that once Karius has a decent defence in front of him like he did last season at Mainz 05. After all you don’t go from being named the second best goalkeeper in the Bundesliga to being absolute shite after 8 games.
Hopefully over Christmas, Karius will prove his worth, will prove Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville wrong and I’ve no doubt that come the end of the season, Karius will be in the Premier Legaues top 3 goalkeepers and all those who doubted him will have to recant their opinions of him.