Mignolet Set To Be Dropped For Porto Clash
Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet could be heading for the Anfield exit this summer. The 29-year-old Belgium international has lost his place in the first team to German keeper Loris Karius. That was after Mignolet was first choice for much of the Premier League season to date.
Mignolet was perceived to be Jurgen Klopp’s number one keeper for Premier League matches with Karius the choice for matches in the Champions League and the domestic cup competitions. But Karius played in the goalless draw at home to West Bromwich Albion on 13 December. It was only his second league start of the season but he has played in six league matches since then and let in eight goals in nine matches in all competitions since that time.
The implication was that the two keepers’ roles have been reversed, but Klopp hinted that there may not be a start for Mignolet in Liverpool’s Champions League Round of 16 clash with FC Porto on Wednesday.
“To be honest I have not made the final decision but it is not the same situation as it was,” Klopp said. “A good one will play, but I haven’t made the decision so far.”
If Karius does play against Porto – as now seems likely – it will suggest that Klopp has now abandoned his rotation policy. It could also be bad news for Mignolet as it would suggest he is now a permanent second choice behind Karius.
It’s a situation that will suit Karius. The 24-year-old has made just 31 appearances for the Reds since his £4.7million move from German side FC Mainz in the summer of 2016.
“In the last few games I’ve had more stuff to do and I’ve been able to make some saves, which give you more confidence,” he said after Sunday’s 2-0 victory at Southampton. “I feel good, I feel strong.”