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Real Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois would take a penalty against Liverpool in the Champions league final

Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois insists he is ready to be a penalty TAKER if there is a shootout with Liverpool in the Champions League final, insisting: ‘I’m not afraid – it’s a time to to shine’

  • Thibaut Courtois would stand up if the Champions League final goes on penalties
  • The Real Madrid goalkeeper had a mixed record of taking penalty kicks at Chelsea
  • Courtois has made 52 saves out of 15 against Alisson in the league so far this season
  • Belgian star Courtois hopes Liverpool goalkeeper has a clear final
  • Follow Sportsmail’s live build and news from the Champions League decider

Thibaut Courtois is set to take a penalty against Liverpool in the Champions League final, with the Real Madrid goalkeeper insisting he wouldn’t be afraid of a shootout against the Reds, whether he’s trying to save penalties or getting one tries to score.

Courtois has been the busiest goalkeeper in the Champions League this season, repeatedly saving the LaLiga winners in an extraordinary run of late wins in knockout matches.

The Belgium international has made 52 saves – 37 more than Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson – which he was forced to make during his side’s relatively easy path to the final.

Thibaut Courtois scores a penalty for Chelsea against PSG in the International Champions Cup

Thibaut Courtois scores a penalty for Chelsea against PSG in the International Champions Cup

The goalkeeper fared less favorably against Arsenal in 2017 and sent his shot into the stands

The goalkeeper fared less favorably against Arsenal in 2017 and sent his shot into the stands

Courtois told the Guardian: ‘I would certainly not belong to the first five (takers). But maybe after that, if you gotta shoot, you gotta shoot.

‘I’m not afraid of it. It’s a time to shine. We won two against Atletico Madrid in the Super Cup two years ago when I saved one penalty and this season I saved three penalties [in all competitions]†

‘In preparation at Chelsea against PSG [in 2015] I scored one and in the Community Shield [in 2017] against Arsenal I missed one.

†[Then Chelsea boss Antonio] Conte put me there because he knew I could shoot it well, but being on the spot at a key moment is different.”

Real Madrid's Courtois hopes he won't repeat his Community Shield torment against Liverpool

Real Madrid’s Courtois hopes he won’t repeat his Community Shield torment against Liverpool

Conte called Courtois ‘one of our best players to take a penalty’ when the manager came under scrutiny after his No. 1 shot his attempt over the bar against the Gunners.

The manager said at the time: “When your player shows you in training that you are one of the best, you pick him to play and you try to shoot a penalty.”

Courtois is proud of his crucial saves that have denied the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Lionel Messi and Jack Grealish this season, and believes it will damage Liverpool’s confidence to beat him in their pursuit of a treble.

He said: ‘It’s good for them to see that it’s not easy to score against me. That’s what makes Madrid so special, why it’s so great, why history talks so much about Real Madrid.

Courtois has been in inspired form this season, helping Madrid knock out Manchester City

Courtois has been in inspired form this season, helping Madrid knock out Manchester City

‘All those comebacks, those special moments at the Bernabeu. You can only experience that at Real Madrid.

“You just have to watch the home games against Paris Saint-Germain, Chelsea and Manchester City.

‘You see the moment we score, the reaction of the other team; they know what can happen.

COURTOIS’ CHAMPIONS LEAGUE CAMPAIGN IN NUMBERS
Matches Goals against penalty kicks clean sheets
12 14 1 4

‘It’s definitely harder [to be a goalkeeper] now. If you go back 15 or 20 years, being a goalkeeper was very different.

“Now you have to be a playmaker from behind, you have to come out like a libero to get a ball behind it and run out and get it.

“They expect you to be calm on the ball and make decisive passes, but you have no one behind you to save you.

“All teams expect that from a goalkeeper and you know that mistakes can sometimes be made. I hope it doesn’t come for me or Alisson. I wouldn’t wish that on any keeper.’

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