Bengaluru, March 19: Liverpool's dream of achieving a treble was shattered just within two weeks and their backup keeper Adrian has had a major role in it to play.
Having a good deputy keeper looks to be one of the prime keys of having a good run in all formats now and Adrian's mistakes in Liverpool's last two cup games could be highlighted as major examples.
The shot-stopper was at fault against Chelsea in their FA Cup tie while his mistake in the Champions League game also provided lifelines to visitors Atletico who eventually knocked the home team out.
In the first instance, he mishandled a shot against Chelsea in the FA Cup, resulting in their opening goal and Liverpool’s exit from the competition. Against Atletico, he didn’t have to do much all game but when it mattered he couldn’t deliver.
Liverpool were 2-0 up on the night in extra-time, only for Adrian to miss-hit a pass. It found Marcos Llorente who tried his luck from the edge of the box. The goalkeeper didn’t set himself properly and Liverpool conceded the first goal. It handed Atletico their away goal advantage and later they went on to grab another two.
Adrian obviously played because first choice Alisson Becker had an injury. However, that does not make the mistakes accountable. The 33-year-old is believed to have signed a two-year deal upon his move to Liverpool in August, with the option of a further 12 months. He although has been quite useful a couple of times in the season but with him already being 33, he is surely not going to improve at this point.
At such a point, the inclusion of Caoimhin Kelleher in goal, especially if Alisson is still struggling with the injury looks like the best choice.
Amidst the coronavirus scare, the season may have stalled temporarily but if it is back, the Irish international should be tested in front of goal, after Liverpool secure the pl trophy, which only necessitates two wins out of nine.
Kelleher was handed a debut in the EFL cup this term where he kept a clean sheet as a young Liverpool team ran out 2-0 winners over MK Dons. Since then he has featured for the first team a further three times.
The youngster is rated highly among the Liverpool management and there would be nothing to lose by utilising him in the closing stages of the campaign.
Surely with Alisson ahead of him, he is nowhere likely to be the first-choice anytime soon but these game time could hand him the opportunity of proving himself capable of being Alisson’s backup next season. If he shows promise on a regular basis then Liverpool will have a potentially bright option for future, if not then it will be a learning experience for him, while Adrian will again cover the position for next season. But at the moment, a chance like this can be taken.