Pundits play violin for Nick Pope after Carabao Cup final blow
Nick Pope will miss Newcastle United’s eagerly awaited Carabao Cup final against Manchester United next weekend after receiving a straight red card against Liverpool.
Newcastle’s first choice goalkeeper was sent off midway through the first half after flying out off his line and handling the ball outside the box when trying to stop Mohamed Salah from scoring adding to Liverpool’s lead on Saturday in the Premier League.
The Magpies were already trailing 2-0 when Pope tried to intercept a long pass from opposite goalkeeper Alisson. He misjudged the bounce of the ball as he grabbed hot with his hands to prevent Salah from a goalscoring opportunity.
NIGHTMARE! Nick Pope is SENT OFF! 🟥
He will now MISS the Carabao Cup final… pic.twitter.com/kDaVTZSA6T
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) February 18, 2023
Footage courtesy of Sky Sports
Pundits play violin for Newcastle goalkeeper
The reaction to Pope’s dismissal this weekend has been interesting to say the least.
Gary Lineker didn’t hold back on Match of the Day when he said it is unfair that Pope has to miss the Carabao Cup final.
“Come onnnn, let Nick Pope play!”
— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) February 18, 2023
Footage courtesy of BBC Sport
However, Lineker did not disagree with referee Anthony Taylor’s decision, but he doesn’t think the suspension should impact his Carabao Cup selection — and that he should sit out a league match instead.
Here’s the full transcript from Match of the Day involving former Newcastle striker Alan Shearer, who felt Taylor had no other choice but to send Pope off:
Alan Shearer: “I do feel sorry for him because he’s probably been Newcastle’s best player this season. He hasn’t made an error this season, he’s been superb, and he’s only conceded 15 goals. I don’t know why he didn’t go clear it with his left or right foot. That’s the law, he’s got to be sent off.”
Gary Lineker: “The one thing I would say though is he’s getting a one-game ban in a competition that is different. He’s going to miss the Carabao Cup final now, that seems disproportionate. Wasn’t Joelinton on nine yellows? Had he got another yellow he’d have missed two games but not the Carabao Cup final. Come on, let him play in the cup final! He’s been brilliant this season.”
Alan Shearer: “Keep on going Lineker! Keep on going.”
Gary Lineker: “Dubravka is the reserve goalkeeper, the irony is he’s played for Manchester United in the Carabao Cup so he’ll get a winners medal if Manchester United win. So then it comes down to Loris Karius, who hasn’t played a game for two years.”
Alan Shearer: “Or Mark Gillespie. It’s a big blow for Nick Pope and Newcastle. He’s been superb this season, I do feel for him. It’s the only error he’s made. They’ll still to there [to Wembley] full of hope.”
Gary Lineker: “Let him play. Let him play.”
So, just like it was unfair that Casemiro had to miss three domestic games for a minor offence? Get over it. We’ve had to for our best player in recent weeks and he will be missing today when United take on Leicester City at Old Trafford.
Speaking of Leicester… if they were in the final next Sunday, do you think Lineker would still have this bizarre view that the rules should be changed this week to suit Newcastle and Pope?
Meanwhile, Michael Owen added to the violin-playing to mourn the absence of Pope in next week’s final. He tweeted: “Don’t care who you support, you’ve got to feel sick for Nick Pope. Missing next weekend’s final, Newcastle’s biggest game in years, is heartbreaking.”
Don’t care who you support, you’ve got to feel sick for Nick Pope. Missing next weekend’s final, Newcastle’s biggest game in years, is heartbreaking.
— Michael Owen (@themichaelowen) February 18, 2023
Bit dramatic, don’t you think?
Anyhow, where is the same energy whenever a United player gets sent off or misses a final? Peter Schmeichel missed a League Cup final because he got sent off and we can’t forget how Denis Irwin missed the cup final in 1999 because of, erm, David Elleray.
Stretty News verdict
Don’t getting carried away with Pope being suspended for the Carabao Cup final. You just know some keeper we’ve forgotten existed – Loris Karius will have the game of his life.
Hopefully Martin Dubravka gets a medal, though.
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