You have to feel sorry for Doni. He was born Brazilian, and, like many others from Brazil, he took up football. He then faced that awkward moment when you realise that whilst your football skills are decent, you unfortunately were born in a country where decent just does not cut it. The only option was to fall back to being a goal keeper. From there though he has seemingly done ok for himself having been Roma’s number one keeper for a few seasons, but he never quite made it to Brazil’s number one spot.
Having then also fallen in the Roma pecking order, he looked for a move elsewhere, and settled on Liverpool. Here he was about to move to a team who’s goalkeeper, Pepe Reina, had strung a long line of consecutive appearances in a Liverpool shirt. He had also moved to England, and unbeknownst to him England was prone to a bit of rain. So much so that Doni recently claimed that he may not stay at Liverpool, because of the dreary weather. This poor guy, coming over to this country where the weather was so miserable, and nobody told him before he went. Still on the plus side, at least as the back up keeper he’d spend most of the rainy game days under shelter.
However, in the debacle that was the Newcastle game, Doni finally saw his chance. In that brief moment of stupidity, Pepe Reina picked up a 3 match ban, and Doni finally saw his chance. 3 matches to prove to the establishment that he might be better than Reina and worthy of keeping the jersey for a few games. His first game was against Villa, and whilst the majority of the team was average or worse, he did well. His distribution is by no means anywhere near as good as Reina’s but he did well enough for the rest of the game. He showed some good composure and touches from back passes that reassured the crowd that during the 3 matches Pepe Reina would be absent for we would not have too much to worry about. Sure you’re always going to want your best team out there but here was a goal keeper that seemed to be doing well, particularly bearing in mind he’s just sat through an entire season.
Up next was Blackburn, another chance to shine, and crucially a chance to brush away more cobwebs before the cup final. It was going so well, with Liverpool going two nil up courtesy of Maxi Rodriguez and Doni still on a clean sheet. It soon came tumbling down in the 25th minute, as a poor back pass put him in trouble and his resulting foul meant he saw red. With the resulting 1 match ban for a red, that pretty much ends Doni’s run, as you would imagine that Pepe will be picked again after the cup semi.
What it does mean is that our third choice keeper, Brad Jones will be in goal for the cup semi final. He did well enough to save the penalty, but then conceded another one later in the game. So now the question is, who is going to be on the bench against Everton? It could have been a bit worse, we could have needed to find two further goal keepers. We do of course have some youth keepers (Danny Ward and Tyrell Belford) and Gulacsi is on loan and could be recalled. With it being a goal keeper, there is the potential to go out an buy another keeper (there is an allowance for emergency transfers being allowed for special cases and the lack of goal keepers has fallen into that category before), but I somehow doubt we would go there, unless of course we’re already planning on selling Doni.
What is certain is that Brad Jones needs to improve his composure and his kicking if he’s to get us through to the final.