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03rd Jul 2018

Liverpool really should have listened to Chris Kirkland’s advice back in 2015

What might have been

Darragh Murphy

Liverpool’s well-documented goalkeeping issues may last beyond the summer.

Jurgen Klopp made it a priority to assess the mental state of Loris Karius when he returned for preseason training on Monday morning, following the Reds’ goalkeeper’s pair of errors in May’s Champions League final defeat to Real Madrid.

Suggestions have been made in recent days that the marquee goalkeeper signing would not be taking place in the current transfer window, after Liverpool lost ground in the race for Alisson Becker’s signature.

Klopp may well keep the faith with Karius and, if he does, one would imagine that plenty of supporters will continue to lack confidence in the Reds’ last line of defence.

It could have been so different if those at the club listened to former ‘keeper Chris Kirkland, however.

Kirkland, who made 45 appearances for Liverpool, has revealed that he recommended current Everton stopper Jordan Pickford to his former club a couple of years ago.

During the 2015/16 season, Kirkland and Pickford were both playing for Preston North End and the veteran ‘keeper advised Liverpool to snap him up.

“I tried to get Liverpool to sign Jordan two or three years ago when I was at Preston with him,” Kirkland told talkSPORT.

“I was raving about him to the Liverpool staff, saying this lad is the best I’ve worked with.

“I told them he is going to be something special – but not many people take notice of me to be honest!

“Unfortunately they didn’t get him and Everton have got, for me, a steal even at £30 million.”

Pickford became the third most expensive goalkeeper in history when he made his move to Goodison Park from Sunderland last summer.

He has since nailed down the No 1 spot for the England national team and there’s no doubt that he would start ahead of Karius and Simon Mignolet if Liverpool had just taken Kirkland’s advice.