The Reds notched up another impressive victory against Middlesbrough in mid-week, with Klopp dropping one of his first team regulars in Loris Karius, who has come under fire in recent weeks.
Since arriving from Mainz in the summer, Karius has started every Premier League game for Liverpool when fit. He missed the first month of the season with a broken hand, but has since become a mainstay in goal for the Reds. It was a huge shock therefore, that the German was dropped for Liverpool’s game against Middlesbrough this past Wednesday.
After the game, manager Jurgen Klopp explained that playing under pressure could hurt the confidence of the player.
“I’m not interested in public pressure, I’m interested in the boy,” said Klopp, according to the BBC.
“There’s no reason to push him through the situation, he loses confidence.”
The German manager was quick to add that the 23-year-old keeper was a huge talent, and that his development is a long term project for the club.
“Karius has a lot of things that other goalkeepers want to have. We want to develop the players – we don’t want to convince people that he’s not bad. I know him really well and he’s much better than he has been in the last two games. It’s a situation which Liverpool have as a long-term project.”
Karius has usurped the number one spot from former incumbent Simon Mignolet this season. However things have gone sour for the German since his high profile mistake against Bournemouth two weeks ago, that led to criticism from the dynamic duo of punditry, Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville.
This soon led to a war of words between former Manchester United full-back Neville and Karius, with Klopp also getting involved in behalf of his young ward. The German keeper has failed to answer his critics on the pitch though, with a poor performance against West Ham probably one of the factors leading to his starting XI snub.
28-year-old Belgian Mignolet has been handed his chance to shine after a prolonged period as second choice, and it remains to be seen if he manages to hold on to the spot or eventually relinquish it back to Karius.