BBC pundit says Liverpool's Kelleher 'scared living daylights' out of Chelsea player
Garth Crooks believes Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga was flustered by Liverpool hero Caoimhin Kelleher’s brilliant penalty kick in Sunday’s League Cup final.
It was never easy for a goalkeeper who entered the pitch specifically for a penalty shoot-out.
Win and you would be the hero. Lose and people would question the reason you came on in the first place.
Unfortunately for Arrizabalaga, it was the latter.
His Liverpool counterpart, Kelleher, on the other hand, got to enjoy his moment.
To be fair, the Republic of Ireland international made several good saves during the 120 minutes and clearly deserves all the praise.
But the only difference between him and Arrizabalaga during the penalty shoot-out was that he converted his, superbly.
That one penalty by Kelleher, according to Crooks, was enough to unsettle Arrizabalaga.
“Throughout this brilliant football match, Kelleher didn’t only keep his nerve but actually won Liverpool the match,” the former Tottenham Hotspur forward told BBC.
“I don’t think I have ever seen anything quite like it.
“A goalkeeper taking the final penalty in a shoot-out and burying it so comprehensively in the back of the net must have scared the living daylights out of Kepa Arrizabalaga because he missed his.”
Arrizabalaga seemed very confident between the sticks but looked rather unsure before stepping up for the penalty.
However, rather than being nervous due to Kelleher’s penalty, it was likely due to the pressure and, perhaps, his lack of preparation as Mario Melchiot recently claimed.
Hopefully, Arrizabalaga can soon move on from the disappointing defeat because he had regained confidence and his form in recent months.