On Saturday at the Olympiyskiy Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, Real Madrid won the Champions League final for the 3rd consecutive year and 13th overall Champions League title with a 3-1 victory over Liverpool. Real Madrid became the first team to accomplish three back to back titles since Bayern Munich but they had considerable help from German Goalkeeper Loris Karius who had a calamitous evening. Liverpool started well proven by Real Madrid’s deep defending clearly intimidated by the attacking trio of Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohammad Salah. Karius gifted Madrid’s first goal in the 51st minute whilst attempting to roll a short pass to his defence, which was easily intercepted by the alert Karim Benzema. Karius watched in horror as the ball slowly rolled into the empty net behind him. His pleas for a foul were futile as there was clearly no infringement in the lead up to the goal. Despite the Reds losing Egyptian talisman top scorer Salah midway through the first half due to a shoulder injury suffered in a clash with Real Madrid Captain Sergios Ramos, Liverpool equalised 4 minutes later through Sadio Mane.
Hope soon turned into despair when substitute Gareth Bale scored from a world-class overhead kick with Karius just looking on in admiration. If Karius’ first mistake could be excused, his second mistake, which lead to Real Madrid’s third goal, was unforgivable. A seemingly tame long range effort from Bale was completely mishandled by the hapless Karius who acknowledged his error by falling on his back despairingly. It effectively ended the game as a contest for Liverpool. At the final whistle, instead of disappearing down the tunnel, Karius bravely walked across to the Liverpool supporters to plead for forgiveness. Although fellow German and Liverpool manager Klopp is his strongest supporter, it would be hard to see Karius keeping the no.1 jersey at Anfield next season.
Should Klopp back Karius for next season? Let us know in the comments below!