David James has backed ‘unflappable’ Liverpool star Alisson to surpass Bayern Munich’s Manuel Neuer as the world’s best goalkeeper.
Alisson has starred for Liverpool since becoming the world’s most expensive goalkeeper when signing from Roma two years ago, playing a crucial role in the Reds’ successes in both the Champions League and Premier League over the past two seasons.
The Brazil international won the Premier League’s Golden Glove during his debut season and has continued to go from strength to strength on Merseyside, the 27-year-old regarded as arguably the most reliable number one in the division.
Former Liverpool goalkeeper James says he has been hugely impressed by the club’s current shot-stopped since his arrival on Anfield and believes Alisson was ‘the best in the world’ during his debut season, a status he believes the ‘unflappable’ star can recapture ahead of the equally impressive Neuer.
“The season before last, Alisson Becker was the best goalkeeper that I was seeing anywhere – I have to say Europe, because I don’t know what’s happening in all the leagues around the world,” James told the Liverpool Echo.
“I can loosely say the best in the world and Alisson was the best. But last season there was a lot of injury issues.
“When Alisson came in, it was clean sheet after clean sheet and he proved his value. After Covid-19, he wasn’t at his best but all Liverpool needed to do was win the league and they did that.
“Manuel Neuer on the other hand has been faultless – in the Champions League final, there were two saves that he made that kept a clean sheet.
“The save against [Samir] Nasri [in the UEFA Super Cup against Sevilla] was top-drawer and he is at the moment, as we speak, the top-performing goalkeeper in the world.
“I think that Alisson is better than Neuer over a longer period of time and he will once again be the best – I love everything about him and he seems unflappable.”
James spent seven seasons at Liverpool but failed to truly convince amid a series of mistakes, and the former England international has praised Alisson for his ability to bounce back from a high-profile blunder in the early weeks of his Reds’ career.
“I think back to when he first signed for the club and he did that drag back against Leicester that resulted in a goal,” he continued.
“For weeks, if not months, people were talking about him being a dodgy goalkeeper and I thought back to my time at Liverpool – one incident, is this going to scar him?
“But he never seemed fazed by it and he continued doing what he does very well which is keeping clean sheets.”