Opinion split as Atletico Madrid rotate keepers

October 9, 2008

CoupetTwo is better than one, or is it?

Atletico Madrid coach Javier Aguirre has stirred up a debate over goalkeepers by refusing to name a first choice custodian at the Calderon, rotating Argentina’s Leo Franco with France’s Gregory Coupet.

The Mexican’s policy has prompted a flurry of differing opinions after Atletico were trounced 6-1 at Barcelona last weekend, with new recruit Coupet in nets.

The Frenchman has conceded nine goals in five league games. Leo Franco, who has mainly been used in Europe, has let in three in four Champions League matches and a league encounter.

Just over 65 percent of Atletico fans surveyed on Marca’s website called for Leo Franco to be given the job for the city derby against champions Real Madrid in nine days time, breaking Aguirre’s apparent system.

The two keepers have both said they are happy with the practice, which Aguirre successfully pursued at Osasuna as he led the modest side to their highest ever Primera Liga finish (fourth) in 2006.

Few eyebrows are raised when outfield players are rotated to keep them sharp, to maintain competition for places, or even for tactical reasons.

Are goalkeepers that different? Is it better to stick with a well-defined first choice, or is it a practical way forward for teams competing on numerous fronts?

PHOTO: Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Gregory Coupet during their Spanish First Division match against Sevilla at the Vicente Calderon, Sept. 28. REUTERS/Andrea Comas


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Posted by Opinion split as Atletico Madrid rotate keepers | Soccer News | Report as abusive

in an ideal world where we hano complains it is a good thin as match fitness is something 2nd goalkeepers really need, and it elimiminates complacency. Sadly Its not an Ideal world.

Posted by njau | Report as abusive

At least it gives the ‘second choice keeper’ hope of actually playing, instead of just sitting on the bench, albeit, being paid to do so.

Posted by Loginoffski | Report as abusive

Its not a new thing for Aguirre – he used to do it at Osasuna as well didn’t he – rotating with Ricardo and Elia. Personally I think its very risky but bizarrely the keepers themselves think it helps keep them on their toes.Judging by how brilliantly Leo Franco played against Olympique – and how dodgy Coupet was against Barcelona – you do have to wonder how sensible it was last week.

Posted by Lee@GuillemBalague.com | Report as abusive

Atlético got thrashed because Aguirre planned the game from a tactical point of view completely wrongly. He didn’t change tactics after the first, nor the second, nor the third goal. It’s Aguirre’s fault, and by doing this he’s avoiding responsibilty and blaming the goalkeeper.

Posted by Simon Harris | Report as abusive

Replace Coupet with their third keeper. He has been in poor form and the season barely started.

Posted by Juan | Report as abusive

See you on http://www.soccershop.com

Posted by Andrew | Report as abusive