Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers made the big decision to drop goalkeeper Simon Mignolet last weekend for Liverpool’s major Premier League clash with Manchester United. Brad Jones was chosen instead but could not prevent the 3-0 thumping by long time rivals United, Jones though improving in the 3-1 midweek victory over Bournemouth.
Simon Mignolet joined Liverpool in June 2013 for £9m. Mignolet has currently appeared in 53 Premier League matches for the Reds but has often faced criticism both last season and this. Liverpool loaned out club hero Pepe Reina to Napoli last campaign and then sold him in the summer to Bayern Munich, a move that has disappointed Liverpool fans who would love to see Reina as a solid alternative to Mignolet.
As Rodgers finally lost patience with Mignolet, he decided to “take him out of the spotlight” for an “indefinite” period, something that surprised many football fans. The Daily Express now carry quotes from Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard who has shown sympathy for his Merseyside compatriot left facing a lengthy spell on the Anfield bench. Howard said: “It is hard, I feel for Simon. I know he is Red. It is hard being a goalkeeper, I don’t agree with it. The phrase is taking someone out of the spotlight, but you actually put the spotlight on them even more.”
Howard continued: “You have to go with it. It is not easy. I feel for him. It is a confidence position and when you bring him back do the fans and team-mates have confidence in him?” He finished by talking about the difficulties the 14 capped Belgium international will face finding his form again: “It is hard road back when you get taken out of the team. Sometimes there is no way back. You cannot come on and play the last 20-30 minutes.”
Liverpool fans, do you think Brendan Rodgers should look for an alternative to Mignolet in January or should he reinstate his number 1 choice?