Loris Karius has the chance to ‘rewrite the story of his career’, claims Eddie Howe… with the German set to play his first game in TWO years in the Carabao Cup final against Manchester United on Sunday amid Newcastle’s goalkeeper crisis
- Newcastle are facing a goalkeeper crisis ahead of Sunday’s Carabao Cup final
- Nick Pope is banned for the Man United clash, while Martin Dubravka is cup-tied
- It means Newcastle’s fourth choice keeper Loris Karius is set to make his debut
Eddie Howe says Nick Pope’s suspension has given Loris Karius the chance to ‘rewrite the story of his career’ ahead of his unexpected Newcastle debut in Sunday’s Carabao Cup final.
The Magpies boss spoke to the German immediately after Saturday’s 2-0 defeat by Liverpool, in which Pope was sent off and ruled out of the Wembley showpiece against Manchester United.
Karius has not played a competitive match for two years and his last game for an English club was the Champions League final with Liverpool in 2018. He made two mistakes leading to Real Madrid goals in a 3-1 defeat that night and was subject to fierce criticism.
The 29-year-old – Newcastle’s fourth choice keeper – has benefited from Martin Dubravka being cup-tied and Karl Darlow being on loan at Hull.
And Howe has challenged Karius to seize that opportunity after confirming the club will not appeal Pope’s dismissal.
Eddie Howe says Nick Pope’s suspension has given Loris Karius the chance to ‘rewrite the story of his career’ ahead of his unexpected Newcastle debut in Sunday’s Carabao Cup final
Pope was dismissed during Saturday’s disappointing 2-0 defeat to Liverpool for handball
‘As soon as it (Pope red card) happened, it was almost that feeling there’s another story in Karius’s career – another page or chapter to write, and who knows what that chapter will look like?’ said Howe.
‘That’s the beauty of football. We never know what is going to happen. It would be a magnificent chance for him to rewrite the story of his career.
‘There’s been loads of stories in football where these things have happened and there’s been a really positive outcome.
‘I had a chat with him on Saturday night, I felt the need to connect with him and speak with him.
‘He was great, very relaxed. That’s the kind of guy he is, a very cool customer.’
With Karius almost certain to start, Mark Gillespie will take the role of substitute keeper. He last played two-and-a-half years ago.
Max Thompson, 18, is set to travel as back-up. He is the son of longstanding kitman Ray, who will be on duty at Wembley.
The situation was avoidable given both Dubravka and Darlow were allowed to leave by the club this season after expressing a desire to play games. And Howe admits, with hindsight, they would have taken different decisions.
Howe revealed he spoke to his fourth choice stopper in the aftermath of the game on Saturday
Karius hasn’t played a game for an English club since the Champions League final with Liverpool in 2018 when he made two mistakes in their heartbreaking 3-1 defeat to Real Madrid
‘I think if you go right back to the start of the season, you would do things differently,’ he said. ‘We don’t have that, you’re never in a position where you might foresee what will happen.
‘When I say “we”, I’m talking about everyone connected with the football club. Martin is cup-tied – would we have foreseen that as an issue? We thought Martin would be at Man United all season.
‘Then the Karl situation, they’re not as clear as what people from the outside would see. We’ve ended up in the situation we’re in. The Nick Pope sending off – that’s how the footballing gods work.
‘From my perspective, I’m relaxed. I think I’ve got a very good goalkeeper with huge experience – whoever I pick – to go in and do a job.’
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