The summer transfer window this season gained notoriety not more for the signings that came through the window, but rather it being the first time clubs in the Premier League acted out on the agreement to have the window closed before the commencement of the first match of the season.
Transfer junkies would have been equally awed and horrified as clubs around the country rushed around to complete their business just before the conclusion of deadline day.
The window was also famous for the breaking of the world transfer record for a goalkeeper – not once but twice! Barely 19 days from when Liverpool signed Brazilian goalkeeper, Alisson from Roma for €67m; league rivals, Chelsea, short in the goalkeeping department, activated the release clause of Atletico Bilbao’s Kepa Arizzabalaga for €75m.
A quick overview of the Brazilian goalkeeper, since his move to Liverpool, shows that he has hit the ground running. Presently, Alisson remains the only goalkeeper in the league not to have conceded a goal since the beginning of the season.
Liverpool ran away with a 4 – 0 win against West Ham on opening day with Alisson having to make two saves to keep a clean sheet. The following week, they took Crystal Palace to the cleaners, with a 2 – 0 win, and the goalkeeper was called upon to make 6 saves to keep the Reds in the game. The third week led to a 1 – 0 win over Brighton, with Alisson getting down to block two goal-bound shots.
Apart from his saves, the goalkeeper has contributed strongly in the other departments. Since his transfer to Liverpool, Alisson has comfortably been the 12th man in Liverpool’s attacks. Exhibiting ball control skills some strikers would envy, the goalkeeper has led the attack from the back, ensuring possession for the Reds and giving the outfield players time to take up needed positions.
The strongest contender for the best goalkeeper’s award is Manchester United’s David de Gea. However, the Spaniard has always been criticised for his inability to command his penalty area.
This is where Alisson shines. More and more into the Brighton game, the goalkeeper had to come quickly off his line to squash Brighton’s venture into the penalty area, squashing out threats before they became dangerous. Matchora a leading prediction site rated him a 9.8 for his brilliant performance in this particular game.
With only two shots to save from the Brighton game, the stats would reveal that the Reds’ had a strong defence. Definitely, Andy Robertson put in a good stint. Virgil Van Dyke was immense, more and more making his €75 million price tag a bargain. But Alisson could probably take the trophy for earning the Reds all three points.
His 89th minute save from a cross from Brighton’s midfielder, Pascal Gross was nothing short of back-breaking, and put the Reds on course to earn the three points to lead them to the top of the league table. This was no easy feat considering that erstwhile champions Manchester City had been at the top of the table since the beginning of last season.
With City having played for a draw in the weekend, that save might just be the difference between runners-up and winning the League.