In the modern game, the mistakes of one player often unwrap the painfully engineered brilliance of the rest of the squad.
While the team-game dictates that all positions are equally complicit in trying to bring out a victory or destroy hopes in a game, as of recent, goalkeepers have been the ones facing the brunt of criticism for their mistakes. The reason is evident, of course.
These players function as the final line of defense, and a slipped ball from one’s grasp is often easier to blame than a poor pass made further along the field. Loris Karius is well aware of such incidents, wherein Liverpool’s Champions League final’s loss was attributed to his mistakes.
On Tuesday, Manchester United star David De Gea was at the receiving end of a similar blow. The erstwhile terrific shot-stopper let in 3 goals from Barcelona, with the tie ending on a 4-0 aggregate win for the Spanish side.
Two goals from Messi sealed the fate of the home side, while the Red Devils could only see their world-class goalkeeper fumble Messi’s shot. The Sun now reports that De Gea was deeply sorry about his folly, and apologized to his teammates after the full-time whistle.
The report went on to add that the Spaniard blamed himself for the loss as well, and felt that the result would have been very different had he not done what he did.
While it is hard to assign complete blame on the Spaniard, it is evident that his mistakes were expensive. At the start of the game, United had a strong chance to bring the tie around, with Barca performing poorly at Old Trafford and their away-goal arriving through a Luke Shaw own-goal.
However, the brace from Messi killed all morale within their ranks. It has been suggested that the drama surrounding De Gea’s contract extension may be behind his poor form as of late.
David reportedly wants a higher pay and assured Champions League football next season before sealing his long-term future at Old Trafford. It is also believed that the likes of PSG and Real Madrid are still interested in signing him.