Kelleher reveals Alisson


Kelleher reveals Alisson "was proud" of him after performance against Ajax

Phil Egan
Phil Egan

12:08 8 Dec 2020

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Irish goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher says Liverpool's number 1 Alisson sent him a message of congratulations after his Champions League debut against Ajax.

The 22-year-old was handed his first European start against the Dutch side last week as Jurgen Klopp's side advanced to the last 16 of the competition with one group game to spare.

"My phone was buzzing for about 3 days after the [Ajax] game," Kelleher said at a press conference before Wednesday's game away to FC Midtjylland.

"From friends, former coaches, family. Alisson texted me as well to say well done and that he was proud of me."

The Cork native backed up an impressive performance with another clean sheet on his Premier League debut at home to Wolves on Sunday.

"It's been a decent week! What can I say!? Two debuts in a week is a bit of mad one, but been a good week," Kelleher said.

"I've just been trying to take my opportunities when I get them. I've done well in 2 games but that is all I can do."

"I think it's definitely getting easier. On the weekend I felt more comfortable than [Ajax].

"It was a class feeling going down and having fans there singing. Hearing them sing You'll Never Walk Alone was class."

Liverpool goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher saves the header from Ajax's Klaas-Jan Huntelaar during the UEFA Champions League Group D match at Anfield, Liverpool.

Liverpool's number one Alisson was ruled out of the Ajax game with a hamstring injury and most expected Adrian to deputise but Klopp opted for Kelleher.

"I think I've just been focusing on getting better and to be ready if an opportunity came.

"I just trained and prepared. I was told day before Ajax game I would be playing."

It was the first time Kelleher got a chance to play in the strongest possible starting 11 because before that he played in League Cup and FA Cup ties.

"[Last season's games] I knew I could have done better but we had a lot of youngsters again strong teams so I wasn't too hard on myself. Didn't spend too much time worrying about it."

The first player Jurgen Klopp went to congratulate after the 1-0 win over Ajax was Kelleher, who denied Klaas-Jan Huntelaar late on.

"It was an instinct reaction save, he was that close and I just tried to get anything on it.

"It was a nice moment to make that save. For the manager to come up to me after the game, it was a nice moment for me."

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Caoimhin Kelleher Champions League FC Midtjylland Jurgen Klopp Liverpool

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