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    Courtois prepared for penalties

    By Newsreport.co.zw | Published: 27 May 2022

    Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has said he will not be afraid to take a penalty if their Champions League final against Liverpool goes the distance on Saturday.

    Courtois has an impressive record saving penalties this season, having stopped three of his five faced, including one from Lionel Messi against Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of the last 16.

    It proved a crucial moment as Madrid came back from 1-0 down in the second leg to win the tie 3-2.

    The Belgian was also instrumental in Madrid’s most recent penalty shoot-out victory in 2020, as he dived to palm away Thomas Partey’s shot in the final of the Spanish Super Cup against Atletico Madrid. Real Madrid won their last Champions League final that went to penalties, also against Atletico in 2016.

    Courtois said he will be doing his homework on Liverpool’s most likely takers while the 30-year-old said he is also ready to step up if required.

    “I remember in pre-season with Chelsea against PSG I scored one and in the Community Shield against Arsenal I missed one,” said Courtois. “(Antonio) Conte put me there because he knew I could shoot well, but obviously standing on the spot, in an important moment, is different.

    “I wouldn’t be one of the first five (takers), for sure, but maybe after, if you need to shoot, you have to shoot. I don’t fear it. It’s a moment to shine.

    “We won one (shoot-out) against Atletico Madrid in the Super Cup a few years ago when I saved one penalty. This season I have saved three.

    “You study ahead. Against Chelsea we had two penalties and you study them, because you can see the similarities. Hopefully it will not come back to that but if it does, I will be ready.”

    Mohamed Salah has already said he wants revenge for their loss to Real Madrid in the 2018 final, when two errors by Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius gifted Madrid the win.

    Liverpool signed Alisson Becker a few weeks later for a world-record 75 million euros and the Brazilian has been a revelation ever since.

    “He is a great goalkeeper,” said Courtois. “The times I have played against him in England and with Real, he is one of the best goalkeepers in the world.

    “He has great quality and has saved Liverpool a lot of times. Nowadays you need a good defence and goalkeeper and at the other end you need strikers who score you goals, that is what takes you far

    Source Newsday

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