Former Liverpool manager Graeme Souness has urged Jurgen Klopp to drop Loris Karius as number 1 goalkeeper or face the consequences should the 25-year old make another mistake for the Merseyside club. This comes as Liverpool have reportedly made a bid for Roma's Brazillian goalkeeper Alisson.
Souness was speaking exclusively to beIN SPORTS after covering the 2018 FIFA World Cup final between France & Croatia. Reflecting on the summer business of Liverpool, Souness believes that Jurgen Klopp's signings, which include Naby Keita, Fabinho & Xherdan Shaqiri will improve the side, but a goalkeeper should be a top priority.
"You have to say Liverpool on paper, the players that they have brought in if they perform as they say about them on the tin they will improve. You’ve mentioned the goalkeeper as a Liverpool supporter I would like to see them get a goalkeeper."
It seems that Jurgen Klopp will be taking the advice of Souness, with reports late yesterday evening that a world-record bid for the Roma number one had been made. Allison, 25 is widely considered to be one of the best young goalkeepers in the world, and was Brazil's keeper during the 2018 FIFA World Cup, playing in five matches for his country.
Souness added that if Liverpool wanted to challenge for the top honours, that they need a big goalkeeper. "It doesn’t matter how good your team is your goalkeeper is asked to make a save every 90 minutes of play, it might be one save it might be ten saves even when you're dominating the game they’ll be a situation were a goalkeeper is called into play to do something. If you want to win the top trophies you need a top goalkeeper.
When asked about the case for the German keeper to be dropped the 65-year old Anfield legend was defiant, calling for Liverpool to sign a new player although admitted it would be a tough call for Jurgen Klopp.
“I think so, the manager is in a difficult position because he’ll want to be loyal and seen to do the right thing by Karius but if you get into another big game and he lets you down again, then people would be critical of the manager saying, you know he’s like this.”
Karius made two critical errors in the Champions League final against Real Madrid, leading to Kaim Benzema & Garth Bale to score the goals as Los Blancos won 3-1 and sealed a third consecutive European Cup. For Souness, it’s hard for Karius to remain number one.
“Very rarely do people make mistakes, although that is part and parcel of any professional sport, people do make mistakes but to make two on such a big stage. It’s going to be difficult for Karius to remain as the number one at Liverpool.”
The German hasn’t made the ideal start to this season with the Reds either, as another error saw him concede in a friendly against Tranmere Rovers. Despite the stuttering start to pre-season, Souness did see that Karius could return as number one in time.
“He might need to be number two again and he may come back that way, but I think to come back as the number one to carry that burden, it’s a lot of pressure on himself and then you have to wonder the level of confidence the players around him would have. “
Souness was asked about making the call as the manager and added that the longer Karius is number one the more pressure is piled on Jurgen Klopp if the keeper makes another error in a big game.
“It’s not difficult, you make your mind up or you don’t. I think Jurgen has to look and be selfish about it and say well if I stick with him as a number one he’s putting his own neck on the noose because if he makes another mistake as we said it will come back on the manager this time not only the player."