Super Cup: Liverpool’s Adrian on ‘crazy week’ & Jurgen Klopp turns Rocky
Liverpool keeper Adrian, a free agent nine days ago, said his key penalty shootout save in their Uefa Super Cup win over Chelsea capped a “crazy week”.
The 32-year-old was released by West Ham in June and signed for Liverpool on 5 August, jumping up the pecking order after an injury to Alisson.
His heroics inspired boss Jurgen Klopp to channel his inner Rocky Balboa when he shouted “Adriaaann” in a pitchside interview.
“Like Rocky,” he added. “What a story.”
Adrian saved Tammy Abraham’s penalty as Liverpool won 5-4 in the shootout in Istanbul.
“Welcome to Liverpool!” Adrian told BT Sport. “I’m really happy for the team, I’m happy to play for Liverpool and happy for the fans. It was a long game but in the end a great finish for us.”
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, who gave Adrian his Premier League debut against Norwich last Friday after Alisson was forced off with a calf injury, said the Spaniard “kept his nerves together”.
“He’s loud in the dressing room already,” the German said. “I don’t think he’s won a lot in his life so it’s good for him to win it. He made some unbelievable saves, both keepers did, so I’m really happy for him.”
The game finished 2-2 in 120 minutes after Abraham won a controversial penalty in the 101st minute – Adrian appearing to get the slightest touch to the striker’s knee.
But the Liverpool keeper made up for any involvement in the decision – which was checked by VAR before Jorginho slotted it past Adrian – by becoming the shootout hero.
Centre-back Virgil van Dijk said he told Adrian he would steal the limelight.
“I said before the game that anything can happen in a final and in the end the penalties decided the game,” Van Dijk told BT Sport.
“I told Adrian before the penalties he could be the hero – he did it so I’m happy for him and for the club.”