Judging from the raft of errors, gaffs and literal droppings of the ball he has made, one could be forgiven for assuming Liverpool keeper Simon Mignolet is determined to have his own personal blooper reel DVD commissioned before the season is out.
His latest misdemeanour – an own goal in the Reds’ 3-1 win over Leicester last time out – was hardly his fault, but the errantly placed pass that preceded it, presenting Esteban Cambiasso with an open net he contrived to miss, should’ve spelled another concession courtesy of the blundering Belgian.
Still, despite this giraffe-neck length list of mishaps, Brendan Rodgers refuses to remove Mignolet from the first-team picture.
Whether the Ulsterman’s loyalty is borne out of a genuine belief in the Belgian’s ability or, the most likely solution, that back-up Brad Jones is deemed insufficient to stand in, the 1/4 about the regular net minder starting Liverpool’s game against his old club Sunderland is bona fide free money.
The one-time north east Footballer of the Year is yet to miss a Premier League match in Liverpool colours for medical, disciplinary or form-related matters.
Having made countless cock ups in the past and still maintained his number one status, it would be completely contrary to Rodgers’ selection rituals (which also include refusing to protect his back four) if he was to throw Jones in for the Black Cats’ visit.
With this punt sure to come in, those looking to make another fast buck on the match need look no further than an under 2.5-goal bet at even money.
Three of Liverpool’s last five Premier League home games would’ve rewarded those to have made this particular wager, while they’ve scored one or fewer in four of their last five in front of the Kop.
Since losing 8-0 in farcical fashion at Southampton, the Wearsiders have responded admirably, conceding more than once on just two occasions since, with two of the division’s brightest talents doing the damage.
Alexis Sanchez scored both goals in Arsenal’s 2-0 win at the Stadium of Light, while Sergio Aguero was their executioner in Manchester City’s 4-1 win last time.
Since their spanking at St Mary’s, the goal line in four of their six outings has fallen short of the mark in question.