The Liverpool Echo have been putting the questions to Marc Iles of The Bolton News on Friday, following confirmation of Adam Bogdan’s move from the Championship club to Liverpool on a free transfer.
Daily Mail names Liverpool’s best Premier League XI – Babbel & McManaman included
Liverpool’s top 20 targets named – Colombian forwards & Croat dynamo feature
Six perfect replacements for Raheem Sterling named by football stats website
Many Reds fans will confess to not knowing much about our new man – having likely only seen him play once, in the FA Cup game against us in January – since Bolton were relegated from the Premier League in 2012.
Thankfully, Iles suggests that the Hungarian international has come on a lot since then. While he admits that he’ll struggle to oust Simon Mignolet from the number one spot, he’s also confident that he’ll do a good job for us.
He points out his excellent handling as well as his fantastic reputation for saving penalties. The flame-haired keeper has denied the likes of Wayne Rooney and Jordi Gomez in the last couple of years and will soon be hoping to do the same at Anfield.
Below, you can read the full Q&A between the Echo and Iles:
Thanks for giving Liverpool fans your insight, Marc. Firstly, what can Reds supporters expect from Bogdan? What type of goalkeeper is he? What are his main strengths and weaknesses?
Adam has grown up at Bolton to become a very consistent keeper, eliminating some of the distribution errors he suffered early on in his career.
His kicking has improved dramatically but his biggest strength is handling, coming out to take crosses and adding an air of calm to the back four.
He has developed a reputation as a penalty specialist as well, employing some of the mind games that Liverpool fans will recognise to deny the likes of Wayne Rooney and Jordi Gomez in the last couple of years.
He’s been in and out of the Bolton side for the majority of his time at the club. Why do you think he never truly established himself as number one?
Since taking over as Bolton’s number one from Jussi Jaaskelainen, it has been a very rare occasion that Adam has missed a game through anything other than injury.
He has suffered a few knee and ankle problems in the last couple of seasons and they, more than any technical deficiency would be his main weaknesses.
In the last three years Adam has been up against a very good keeper in Andy Lonergan, who has never let Bolton down when he stepped in. I think it’s unfair to question Bogdan’s ability based on the number of games he played last season.
He was obviously the regular keeper in the relegation season, how did he acquit himself in the Premier League on a weekly basis?
Adam was still growing up at that point. I remember him having a nightmare at Chelsea in a 5-1 defeat, albeit one where his back four disappeared without a trace, and readers on Merseyside will know all about Tim Howard’s wind-assisted effort at Goodison, which left him red-faced.
Those experiences as a youngster could have broken him, instead he became tougher, more focused and a much better all-round keeper.
Brendan Rodgers speaks a lot about players with ‘character’. What is Bogdan’s off-field persona like? Is he popular with fans and team-mates?
We know him as “Shaggy” because of his likeness to the Scooby Doo character – and Adam is a pretty laidback lad. Like his mentor Jaaskelainen, however, his mental preparation for games cannot be faulted.
Adam is very intelligent, not your archetypal footballer, and you could just as easily find yourself discussing politics as football when he did an interview.
He definitely has an endearing side, though. His English skills have improved hugely but he’s still quite conscious about selecting the right words. Every once in a while he’ll lose track of where he is in a conversation and start all over again!
Realistically, do you see him putting any pressure on Simon Mignolet to be Reds’ first choice?
There were times last season when Liverpool looked like they needed another option, Mignolet was struggling for confidence and needed a break. Perhaps Brendan Rodgers didn’t feel he had it.
Adam will be prepared for his chance, I know that. He might not have the star quality that the Liverpool fans crave but as a goalkeeper he’s a very safe pair of hands.