Jurgen Klopp backs Loris Karius as search for new number one stalls

Jurgen Klopp backs Loris Karius as search for new number one stalls

The German stopper is almost certain to remain at the club next season, and could well retain his number one status with goalkeeping transfer targets ruled out.

Matt Addison

Liverpool could be set to enter the new season with Loris Karius as their number one as the Reds search for a new goalkeeper has so far been unsuccessful.

Karius’ errors in the Champions League final only heightened speculation that Jurgen Klopp would seek a replacement this summer, but Alisson Becker of AS Roma and Jan Oblak of Atletico Madrid appear to be unattainable.

Alisson’s price-tag has been mooted as being as high as €100 million which Liverpool are not prepared to match, while Oblak’s release clause is of the same value and there are no clear-cut suggestions that the Slovenian wants to make a move away from Madrid.

As such, Klopp is prepared to go into the new season with Karius between the sticks.

He has waited for previous top targets before, with Virgil van Dijk the prime example, and is prepared to do so again.

Embed from Getty Images

Bouncing back

Speaking to LFCTV about Karius’ performance in the final, Klopp said: “I don’t know exactly what people think or made of the situation. The only thing I can say is he had a concussion in the game.

“He was influenced by that knock, that is 100 per cent. What the rest of the world is making of it, I don’t care. It’s really not important what the people say. We do not use it as an excuse.”

Liverpool confirmed around a month ago that Karius had been diagnosed with a concussion at Massachusetts General Hospital while on holiday in the US.

Klopp also provided more details on how the concussion was detected.

He said: “Whoever had a concussion knows there is not one way how it feels, there are different ways. He didn’t feel it obviously. He had a knock on his head and he felt that but he didn’t know he had a concussion - that’s how concussions are.

“I got all the pictures from different perspectives, saw it and thought: ‘how can we all think that the boy who didn’t show any weakness in that game until then made these big mistakes in a very important game and nobody thinks it’s because of the knock he got?’ .

"How can we think that? That was, for me, the explanation and I thought: ‘OK, come on, we need to check that'. Five days after the final, Loris had 26 of 30 markers for a concussion still. 

Klopp was also keen to stress that he is not seeking an excuse for the poor performance, adding:  “We don’t use it as an excuse; we use it as an explanation. For me, it is 100 per cent the explanation and that’s all.”

Karius could start in the first of nine pre-season fixtures Liverpool have lined up against Chester on Saturday before their Premier League campaign begins against West Ham United on Sunday, August 12.

Liverpool are expected to field two separate elevens at the Deva Stadium with Danny Ward the other goalkeeper likely to feature.