Caoimhin Kelleher explains how he calms his Carabao Cup Final 'nerves' 4 months ago

Caoimhin Kelleher explains how he calms his Carabao Cup Final 'nerves'

"I’ll just be relaxed and calm and try to prepare like any other game."

Caoimhin Kelleher is in line to start the Carabao Cup Final against Chelsea at Wembley on Sunday.

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In January, following Liverpool's semi-final victory over Arsenal, Jurgen Klopp revealed the Corkman would start in the final.

Klopp said: "I don’t see any reason why we should not do this. He deserves it. He brought the team here."

Caoimhin Kelleher

Caoimhin Kelleher on becoming a goalkeeper.

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The 23-year-old grew up with dreams of scoring goals rather than stopping them. Had it not been for some sibling intervention, Kelleher's story could have followed a completely different path.

It became evidently clear that Kelleher had raw talent in goals - which saw clubs overseas take him on trial.

"I was a striker for my team and I liked to play in goal with my friends and brothers, just messing about."

"Then the keeper for the team left so I wanted to give it a go... obviously it has worked out well!"

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"I did okay in the first game but it was more that I really enjoyed playing in the position. I took a love to it and kicked on."

Caoimhin Kelleher

"It wasn’t too long after becoming a goalkeeper, maybe six to eight months, that clubs would come looking and wanting to take me on trial."

Kelleher on the Carabao Cup Final.

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Family and friends from Cork have been getting in touch with Kelleher for tickets. The softly-spoken goalkeeper laughs about it now but his pride at being afforded such responsibility is equally clear.

Kelleher made two saves in the penalty shootout against Leicester in the quarter-final. Then he arguably enjoyed his best game for Liverpool when keeping a clean sheet against Arsenal in the semi-final.

The Irish international has an opportunity of a lifetime on Sunday, a moment he does not intend to let pass.

"I’ll just be relaxed and calm and try to prepare like any other game."

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"There will be some nerves. A little bit of nerves is good. I’ve played a few games and had chances to show my ability. I’ve been happy with what I’ve done so far and now have a final to look forward to."