Nightmare in Kiev: Karius' night to forget

It is hard to think of a goalkeeper having a worse game on a bigger night than Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius did in Saturday's UEFA Champions League final.

Rolling the ball into the path of Karim Benzema for the first goal in Real Madrid's 3-1 win over the Reds was bad enough.

But Karius had a second howler, providing Real Madrid with its third goal in the 83rd minute when he allowed Gareth Bale's long-range shot to to slip through his hands.

The last 10 minutes were a mere formality as Real Madrid played out the clock, leaving Karius to agonize over what had just happened in a crazy second half. The 24-year-old German was in tears on the ground after the game, his 13th start of his first season in the Champions League.

Karius apologized to the Liverpool fans, saying he lost the game.

"I feel sorry for everyone," he talkSPORT. "I'm sorry for everyone, for the team, for the whole club. The mistakes cost us dearly. If I could go back in time I would. I just feel sorry for my team. I know I let them down today."

Karius took over for Belgian Simon Mignolet in his second season at Anfield after Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp brought him from Mainz, the German club at which Klopp spent his entire playing career and started his coaching career.

The Liverpool manager said Karius will have to deal with the consequences.

"It's a shame in a game like this and after a season like this," he said at the post-game press conference. "I really feel for him; he's a fantastic boy. Nobody wants that, [but] that's the situation. The mistakes were obvious, we don't have to talk about that, it's all clear; he knows it, I know it, you all know it. Now, he has to deal with it, we have to deal with, we will do that, of course, we will be with him, there's no doubt about that. It was not his night, obviously."

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson came to Karius' defense.

"It is not the mistakes Loris Karius made," the Englishman said. "We got to the final as a team and lose as a team. It is about everybody. We were not good enough on the night, and I am so proud of the players and the fans who came out for us on the night."

If there was a small consolation for Karius, it was that the game was won on a goal by Bale being called the greatest in the history of the Champions League and in time it might be remembered for its wonder goal, not the two blunder goals.

May 26 in Kiev
Real Madrid 3 Liverpool 1. Goals: Benzema 51, Bale 64, 83; Mane 55.
Real Madrid -- Navas; Carvajal (Nacho 37), Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Casemiro, Modric, Kroos, Isco (Bale 61); Cristiano Ronaldo, Benzema.
Liverpool -- Karius; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Wijnaldum, Milner; Mane, Salah (Lallana 30), Firmino.
Att: 70,050.

3 comments about "Nightmare in Kiev: Karius' night to forget".
  1. Bob Ashpole, May 27, 2018 at 9:14 a.m.

    Wow. A fork in the road for this young keeper. Which path will he take from here.

  2. frank schoon, May 27, 2018 at 11:07 a.m.

    He'll recover, just like David Beckham recovered from that incident as a young player when he played for England. The first goal is something he can learn from for I've seen goalies make mistakes  but in different situations. And on the second goal , I would like to hear his explanation of why didn't punch it with both fists or did it take dip or curve or did he misread it...
    Overal this was one of the worst played Championship games... Instead of worrying about what the goalie did, I'm more shocked to see Liverpool not being able to make 2 consecutive passes in the first 8minutes of the game. The only reason Liverpool looked good was that Madrid allowed them. Madrid actually tried to play soccer by trying to build up from the back with the Liverpool team waiting for them in the first third. After the 3rd pass Madrid would lose and allowed Liverpool gain ball possession in front of the Madrid's goal....This was a dumb tactic on Madrid's part for you played into Liverpool's hands. All Liverpool had to do was to steal the ball from a bad pass in Madrid's third...Liverpool simply can't play soccer and allowing them easy access to ball by intercepting it in Madrid's third make them look good team. 
    Madrid played it smart on defense by giving no space to Liverpool's attack. Their midfield and backline played close together leaving Salah to have to play in small spaces which is not his strength. Salah prefers open field runs. Madrid likewise blocked any flank runs by Salah. 
    On the other hand , I found that Modric, Kroos and Isco having their worse games, giving many bad passes, that were intercepted. They were not allowed to make forward runs, through the middle in order to allow more passing options for the outside back on the flank, especially when faced by 2 opponents. And as a result the pass would go back to the center back or straight down the flank to Benzema who usually would have back facing the field or goal.
    Liverpool has no creativeness other than pumping long balls up to players waiting  on  their Harley-Davidson. I hope the MLS will never think of bringing over Jurgen Klopp as a coach for that would spell disaster for American soccer development. We already have one coach who thinks he's Jurgen Klopp.

  3. Kent James, May 27, 2018 at 4:33 p.m.

    While credit goes to Bale for his excellent shots (and credit to Benzema for his intelligent play), what was shaping up as a great match was unfortunately changed when Ramos took Salah out of the game.  While I'll give Ramos the benefit of the doubt that he was not targeting Salah (I think he would have done the same thing to any opponent in that position, not just Salah), the fact is Salah was injured because Ramos continued to hold on to Salah's arm as they fell.  And while an injury to a star player should not completely change the way a team plays, unfortunately it did.  Liverpool did do a bit better in the 2nd half, but it clearly would have been a different game had Salah remained in it.  

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