Gary Neville: Criticism of Liverpool keeper Loris Karius was wrong

GARY NEVILLE: I went too far when I said Loris Karius wasn’t good enough for Liverpool and got into a row with Jurgen Klopp after the keeper’s blunder at Bournemouth… As a decent human being and professional, I overstepped the mark











Gary Neville has admitted he ‘went too far’ in his criticism of Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius five years ago after his remarks sparked a row with Jurgen Klopp.

It was back in December 2016 that German goalkeeper Karius, then 23, spilled a tame shot by Lewis Cook into the path of Nathan Ake in the third minute of injury time to gift Bournemouth a 4-3 win.

Speaking on Sky’s Monday Night Football the following day, Neville said: ‘It’s tough to win the league without a good goalkeeper… he’s not good enough that goalkeeper. 

‘He looks nervous and he isn’t good enough.’

A mistake by Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius gifted Bournemouth a 4-3 win back in 2016

Gary Neville was critical of Karius at the time but now admits he took his comments too far

Gary Neville was critical of Karius at the time but now admits he took his comments too far

Klopp defended his goalkeeper and suggested Neville wasn’t qualified to talk about players on television after his struggles as Valencia manager.

Karius, speaking to Sportsmail at the time, said: ‘I don’t care what Gary Neville said. He was a top player, then he was a manager for a short bit and now he is back to being an expert again.

‘But he is always very critical.’

Now, five years on, Neville has admitted he was wrong to be so critical of Karius.

Jurgen Klopp (left) had installed Karius as Liverpool's No 1 goalkeeper at the start of 2016-2017

Jurgen Klopp (left) had installed Karius as Liverpool’s No 1 goalkeeper at the start of 2016-2017

Karius described Neville as 'very critical' in an interview with Sportsmail just after his error

Karius described Neville as ‘very critical’ in an interview with Sportsmail just after his error

‘I think I have overstepped the mark once in punditry when I have attacked a player that was above and beyond what I should have done as an ex-pro, a coach and an owner,’ Neville said in an exclusive interview with Sportsmail.

‘I think I am a respectable human being. I thought I went too far on Karius. I said Liverpool would never win the league with him.

‘He criticised me after and so did Jurgen Klopp. No problem.

‘I look back now and think I criticised the lad too much for his age, his position.

‘I actually think I was right. They signed Alisson and [Virgil] van Dijk and won it [the Premier League]. But that doesn’t mean I should have done it.

Karius went on to make two costly mistakes in Liverpool's defeat to Real Madrid in the 2018 Champions League final

Karius went on to make two costly mistakes in Liverpool’s defeat to Real Madrid in the 2018 Champions League final

‘I think Gary Neville as a decent human being and professional – knowing how difficult it is to play for United and Liverpool – went too far.

‘Even when [Luis] Suarez bit [Branislav] Ivanovic and some pundits said that was the end of him in England, I defended him on Monday Night Football.

‘I have been in dressing room where players have done things. Not bites, but stuff.

‘I want to finish my career with integrity and I will not call for players or managers to be kicked out of clubs, not on performances anyway.’

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