Southampton 0 Liverpool 2: Is Karius’s New-Found Confidence A Result Of Klopp’s Public Backing?

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, February 4, 2018: Liverpool's goalkeeper Loris Karius celebrates after saving a penalty from Tottenham Hotspur during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

MAD what happens when your goalkeeper isn’t a nervous wreck, permanently looking over his shoulder, isn’t it?

A clean sheet and a 2-0 away victory with a game-affecting save in a decisive moment.

I felt sorry for Loris Karius last week against Tottenham Hotspur. A penalty save and an important one-v-one stop against Heung-Min Son hardly mentioned given all the injury time rewrites because of that crying cunt Erik Lamela.

If the save from James Ward-Prowse’s header was good, the one v one, anticipating the break of the ball to meet Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg square on at the back was post was superb, at a point where a Southampton goal would likely change the entire face of the game.

Talking of game-affecting actions, the speed and aggression of Karius’s release to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, which ultimately leads to Roberto Firmino putting Liverpool a goal up, also needs noting.

One poor punch aside today, over the last two games Karius has looked like the goalie that Liverpool thought they were getting two summers ago.

Is Karius good enough for Liverpool not to address the situation in the summer? More than likely not but over the last two fixtures he’s given himself a chance, what has inspired this mini revival in the 24-year-old?

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, August 27, 2017: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp and goalkeeper Loris Karius after the 4-0 victory over Arsenal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool and Arsenal at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Maybe the courage inspired by the manager publicly backing the German as Liverpool’s first choice has had a bearing on matters.

The clear mind and conviction to make decisions knowing that one mistake from an aggressive moment to make a positive contribution isn’t going to cost you your shirt.

That the manager has allowed his situation to develop over his tenure is an entirely different argument completely but it’s undeniable the difference in performance and demeanour is significant.

The crowd have a part to play in this as much as Jürgen Klopp. We need to pack in the groaning and trepidation and accept that, in trying to do his job to the best of his abilities and not always take the easy option, he probably will make the odd mistake.

But I’d much rather a ‘keeper who has room for improvement than one who has been here four years too long and clearly hasn’t.

As the new Liverpool defensive unit evolves we’ve had a chance to reset expectations — anyone else get on to how high we set ourselves now for opposition freekicks, for example?

Karius has done well enough to deserve a chance to finally make the most important position on this pitch his own.

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29 Comments

  1. Agree with all of that Andy . Also worth pointing out is the impact of VVD on the defence. His presence , shouting and pointing I love. Karius must be benefiting from such a calming , influential CB.

  2. Remember when John Gibbons thought Mignolet was a far superior keeper to Karius.

    LOL

  3. Agree. Karius deserves a run of games to stake his claim. I don’t want to see Mignolet in goal for us again. We’ll never challenge with that clown between the sticks. He’s had countless opportunities and failed to grasp any of them. Good riddance. I thought Karius played well today, assured and confident. Long may it continue.

    • I think your wish will be granted. Barring an injury to Karius I’d be confident to say Mignolet has already played his last game for us.

      P.s Nice article Andy!

  4. He backed him before his last spell in goal and he was terrible. That said he’s doing ok for now, plenty to achieve in the next 11 games. Fingers crossed he grows into a top keeper! More money to spend on other weak positions

  5. Agree totally. My favourite part was actually when he beat their striker to a through ball even though the striker had a head start by virtue of being 5 yards offside. Incidentally in the Rafa’s oily rag X1 1 Jose’s 650 million pound XI 0 game, the Barcodes keeper punched one almost exactly were Karius did last week. I would be very surprised if you find this in any match report.

    • mad how the press / commenters love a Liverpool defence mistake.

      • I think it is as much because most of the commentators are not so bright. If you punch it down the middle of the pitch, two of your team-mates miss it and then someone worldies it into the top bin, that is a bad mistakes. But if that doesn’t happen, the it doesn’t detract from your excellent performance. Just like you never win a pen by staying on your feet but it is wrong to go down easily (not condoning diving – it is the refs that do that, supporting by the media who think they are doing the opposite, which goes back to where I started)

  6. James Lambert

    Greatly encouraged by the last two games. I really hope Loris can keep the standard up and show us how good he really can be during the run in. If he can then we have more money in the kitty for other positions. I’m glad he’s starting to make important saves because in terms of reading the opposing attacks and distribution and positioning he’s very good. Still, worth a caveat that it’s just a start at this point. He needs to keep improving. Good to see though.

  7. Did well today. I just hope we don’t rotate again on Wednesday.

  8. Agree with all of this. I also think that even before Virgil arrived, the defence seemed more at ease with Karius in net – I think he communicates better with them, and VvD just increases this effect. His distribution is much better than Migs too.

  9. Stephen Dougherty

    Never felt confident with Mignolet in nets. He doesn’t give off the air of confidence at all be that on the pitch or off the pitch. Karius although he was poor early on has always had that swagger about him. Now he’s finally been given the backing I think he will shine. I’d love nothing more than for him to give Klopp a question come the summer.
    As for Mignolet I was open to giving him a chance again and again but it’s been too long now and he’s just cutting it. I wish him all the best but come the summer I think we get rid.

  10. Good points. However, and not wishing to compare with Man U in any way, but De Gea didn’t exactly have the best if starts with them. I see lots of positives and improvements with Karius. Surely, Jurgen won’t play Mignolet on Wednesday will he?

  11. So, he’s gone from being shite to being marginally better than Migs to being competent or brilliant after today. How about giving him 20 games or so before we laud or bury him? You know, like Jurgen is probably doing?

  12. Great points Andy on the postmatch podcast re Karius. Just remember how after 3 Golden Gloves awards Pepe Reina was still being compared to David James and Jerzy Dudek by the media. Sometimes it’s easier to go with the historical narrative than actually consider what’s in front of your eyes. Have always felt Karius was a better bet than Mignolet if only that we’ve seen the best of Mignolet and are still tearing our hair out after 5 years. Karius i is no De Gea but could end up being one. It can take years to find a good goalie just look at utd post Schmeichel. Even Liverpool post Grobelaar. It’s also no coincidence that the 3 best goalies in the league play for the clubs that offer the most money

  13. I’m more patient than most when it comes to dropping players – they’re rarely as good or bad as we think they are — but Mignolet’s howler at Arsenal did it for me. Didn’t know at the time if Karius was good enough (and it’s I still don’t) but after we drew that game I felt he deserved a run of games to show whether he was or wasn’t. Glad to see him come good today and justify Klopp’s confidence. Klopp really, really believes in his players, and more often than not they come good for him. Let’s hope Karius continues to build on a couple of encouraging performances.

  14. Oxford Street Maternity

    Playing behind a organised coherent defence improves confidence surely. And if the defence has some confidence in the keeper, then there’s a synergy. Mignolet was fucking useless

  15. “what has inspired this mini revival in the 24-year-old?”

    There was no “revival”. It is rather the short-term-ism of the British punditry which in turn fuels the social media hype engine. The verdict is still out, but he was never that bad as the general public in the UK suggested.

    • Whilst I often agree with your points over how pathetic it is the Liverpool supporters think they know better than Klopp about who to sign and when etc and can’t seem to buy into a philosophy of Klopp’s that I’m convinced will win us the league within 3 years, I’m not sure I agree over this. The Bournemouth game didn’t help him. It was poor goalkeeping throughout. So, was West Ham. He didn’t do well v City (twice I’d say although the recent one wasn’t too poor) and to top it off he ridiculed himself by kicking a goal kick out for a corner. The reality is, he had a terrible start to his Liverpool career. Short termism? Yes, but then if you’re a goalkeeper for a side like Liverpool then you have to show you have some potential. Did Karius in his first season and the start of this one? I don’t think he showed anywhere near the level required and criticism was based on those showings. I don’t think he’s been treated well by Liverpool fans. I think we’ve increased the pressure on him hugely (but then our fans are pathetic most of the time).

      Andy is 100% correct. There’s been a revival in his confidence. Maybe we helped destroy that, maybe he helped. Either way, he looks more assured all of a sudden.

  16. He did ok. Wish we’d bought Newcastle’s new ‘keeper, Dubravka. He looks top class after one game!

  17. Hakuna Matata

    In the 2015–16 season Karius was voted the second best goalkeeper in the Bundesliga by the players, behind Manuel Neuer. He has been in the Germany’s national squad since U16 third choice behind Timo Horn and Marc-André ter Stegen. You do’t get into that squad if you are a bad goalkeeper. Being injured in pre-season (he broke his right hand) some of the mistakes he made quiet possibly stemmed from having had his right hand broken recently. I belive Klopp was to blame, he did not ease Karius into a new league and a new team he dropped him into it, he should have continued with Mignolet and let Karius do the cup games and get used to the English game which obviously is different from the Bundesliga in so far that they have given him Rugby coach.

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