Tuesday 11 December 2018

Loris Karius explains how blossoming understanding with Virgil van Dijk has transformed Liverpool defence

Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius after the final whistle against Southampton
Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius after the final whistle against Southampton

Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius believes his consistent presence in the starting line-up during recent Premier League games has spurred his resurgence.

Karius and Simon Mignolet have battled to be Liverpool's first-choice goalkeeper under manager Jürgen Klopp but inconsistent performances by both shotstoppers have led the German boss to rotate them constantly.

Karius has started the club's last five league games, helping Liverpool notch three wins and keeping two clean sheets in the process.

"I am feeling good and getting consistent game time helps a lot," Karius said. "In the last few games I have had more stuff to do and I have been able to make some saves, which gives you more confidence.

"I have had a lot of experience but it definitely helps when you play regularly instead of coming in and out of the team."

Karius impressed in Sunday's 2-0 league win over Southampton with the help of Virgil van Dijk, who put in a commanding display in central defence on his return to his former club.

"Virgil has played quite a bit now and with him in front we are getting more used to each other," Karius added. "That's important for the team.

"He is a great player. Of course he has to adapt a bit because our style is so different. We defend high and he needs to get used to Dejan (Lovren) and Joel (Matip).

"Individually, Virgil is a top player. That's why Liverpool paid the price they did for him."

Liverpool travel to Porto in the first leg of their Champions League round of 16 tie on Wednesday and Karius, who is likely to start the match, is keen for the Merseyside club to take control.

"Having the second game at home can be a real advantage for us," Karius said.

"But for it to be an advantage we need to put ourselves in a good position in the tie."

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Reuters

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