Liverpool goalkeeper Karius shows humility amid sickening death threats over UCL final nightmare
Karius suffered a Champions League final horror show in Kiev on Saturday night as his blunders gifted Real Madrid two goals in the Spanish club’s 3-1 win.
Haven’t really slept until now... the scenes are still running through my head again and again... I'm infinitely sorry to my teammates, for you fans, and for all the staff. I know that I messed it up with the two mistakes and let you all down... pic.twitter.com/w9GixPiQDC— Loris Karius (@LorisKarius) 27 May 2018
The goalkeeper has since come in for a vile barrage of abuse from livid Liverpool fans on social media, some of whom have wished death on the German 'keeper and said they hoped members of his family would "die of cancer."
Many of the trolls failed to see the irony in using the hashtag #YNWA - representing Liverpool’s famous club mantra of “You’ll Never Walk Alone” - while dishing out the online threats.
Shockingly, ex-Liverpool player Jermaine Pennant also appeared to join in the twisted taunts, saying he was “gutted for the players and the fans” over Saturday’s defeat, “apart from the goalkeeper.”
Merseyside Police have said they will investigate any online threats against Karius and his family.
Karius’ Champions League catastrophe began in the 51st minute when he attempted to throw the ball out with Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema standing just yards away, allowing the striker to stick out his leg and direct the ball into an empty net.
That was followed by another howler on 83 minutes when Karius fumbled Gareth Bale’s long-range shot into the net, giving Real Madrid their third goal and handing the Spanish club a third Champions League title in a row.
A devastated Karius was inconsolable at the final whistle, eventually making his way to the Liverpool fans in Kiev’s Olimpiyskiy Stadium to apologize for the personal horror show that had seen Liverpool’s chances of victory evaporate.
The distraught ‘keeper repeatedly mouthed “sorry” to fans while holding his hands up in contrition, and the 24-year-old German later took to social media to express his remorse at denying Liverpool a potential sixth European title triumph.
...As I said I'd just like to turn back the time but that's not possible. It's even worse as we all felt that we could have beaten Real Madrid and we were in the game for a long time...— Loris Karius (@LorisKarius) 27 May 2018
...Thank you to our unbelievable fans who came to Kiev and held my back, even after the game. I don't take that for granted and once again it showed me what a big family we are. Thank you and we will come back stronger.— Loris Karius (@LorisKarius) 27 May 2018
Many fans rallied around the goalkeeper – in stark contrast to the sickening blame game that has singled out the goalkeeper.
We all make mistakes fella. God knows I’ve made plenty. But it’s time to move forward. No time to dwell on the past. Let’s look to the future. This young @lfc team is only getting started. Show the world how great u can be. #YNWA— Sheamus (@WWESheamus) 28 May 2018
Cheers up mate. mistakes were made, you're a human after all. Redeem yourself next season, prove them wrong. YNWA— RK (@reds_tsar) 27 May 2018
Yeah Karius made a mistake yeah Liverpool lost but Liverpool fans tweeting him wishing him dead & hoping his kids die from cancer. Have a look at yourselves you are a disgrace & should be banned from your club for life— Phil🙏🙏🙏 (@GoonerReverend) 26 May 2018
We lost. Fair enough. For all these people that tweet that they want karius to die is a joke. He’s a human being he made a huge mistake but that’s no reason for death threats. No need for abusive tweets like that it’s not fair on him, he’s just as upset as everyone else.— Brandon Cardwell (@brandpops123) 27 May 2018
Many figures from the game also offered their support to Karius, with Neville Southall, ex-goalkeeper of Liverpool’s Merseyside rivals Everton, extending his hopes that the German could overcome his personal nightmare.
I think even though it’s bad now you will be stronger because of it think about it today then put it away it’s done Focus on the future and being best you can be Go and prove what a great goalkeeper you areGood luck— Neville Southall (@NevilleSouthall) 27 May 2018
Merseyside Police confirmed on Sunday that they would investigate any threats against Karius and his family.
"We take social media posts of this nature extremely seriously” police said. “Offences will be investigated. Officers are aware of a number of comments and threats made via social media.
"Merseyside Police would like to remind social media users than any offences including malicious communications and threatening behaviour will be investigated."
Meanwhile, a petition by Liverpool fans for UEFA to take action against Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos has passed the 150,000 mark.
Spain defender Ramos' cynical first-half foul forced the Reds' star striker Mohamed Salah to leave the pitch injured, depriving Liverpool of their 44-goal striker for much of the game.
It was initially feared that the Egyptian forward's shoulder injury would rule him out of this summer's World Cup in Russia, although he has since tweeted that he is confident of being fit in time to feature in world football's showpiece event.