Alisson Becker: The Common Factor in Barcelona's Last Two Champions League Collapses
Alisson Becker was the goalkeeper of AS Roma when they beat Barcelona in the Champions League last season. Now he is the Liverpool goalkeeper and the club pulled off a huge victory on Tuesday to reach the final.
Alisson Becker made five saves against Barcelona to help Liverpool beat them. (Photo Credit: Reuters)
Liverpool: Liverpool had to score four goals against Barcelona and stop them from scoring any in the second leg of the Champions League semi-final in order to advance to the final.
After they were hit by Lionel Messi magic at Camp Nou last week, it sounded a difficult proposition but the Reds did at their magical home, they call Anfield.
Generally, when four goals have to be scored and they are scored, the focus lies with the scorers, after all had they not found the back of the net nothing else would have mattered.
However, Liverpool owed their success of Tuesday night to their midfield and defence as well and most importantly, to their goalkeeper Alisson Becker.
Barcelona were distraught after the loss at Anfield. For the second straight season, they had blown up a three-goal lead from the first leg to be knocked out of the Champions League.
In last season Champions League quarter-final, they had carried a 4-1 lead from the first leg at Camp Nou to Rome but AS Roma managed an unlikely comeback to knock them out.
On Tuesday, once again they came with a 3-0 lead on aggregate and this time, there was no away goal against them. Yet, they crumbled as Liverpool scored four to dump them out of the tournament they are desperate for.
In both those collapses, there has been one common factor - goalkeeper Alisson.
Last season, Alisson was with AS Roma. At home in the second leg of the quarter-final, he made three big saves to deny Barcelona and help Roma advance into the semis on away goal advantage.
Now he is at Anfield and he was once again a crucial factor as he made five saves to keep Barcelona at bay and frustrated and helped Liverpool get the incredible victory.
Alisson has been the most solid goalkeeper in Premier League this season as well with most number of clean sheet.
His solid punch clears, his positioning and his ability to read situations and react came to the fore once more as he made sure once again that Barca could not get past him at the place he called home.
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