Steven Caulker says he questioned if he was 'sober' in Liverpool debut

‘I was S****** myself’: Steven Caulker reveals he was left ‘panicking’ after being subbed on as a forward for his Liverpool debut, while also admitting he questioned whether he was ‘sober’ after going out the night before

  • Steven Caulker has revealed he questioned if he was ‘sober’ in Liverpool debut
  • The defender recounted a story of how he signed for the Merseyside club in 2016
  • He revealed he had been drinking the night before a 3-3 draw against Arsenal 

Steven Caulker has revealed that he was left ‘s*******’ himself after he was thrown on up front as a last-minute substitute by Jurgen Klopp during his Liverpool debut against Arsenal in 2016. 

The defender, who was contracted to Queens Park Rangers at the time, moved to Anfield in January that year as an emergency loan transfer to provide cover for the Reds’ injury stricken defensive stocks. 

He stayed at the club for the remainder of that season, making three league appearances for Liverpool, before becoming a free agent at the end of the season, moving to Dundee in 2018 before moving to play in Turkey.

The 31-year-old, who is now on the books at Wigan, also admitted that he questioned whether he was ‘sober’ during his Liverpool debut, after claiming he had been drinking the night before. 

But with Liverpool trailing 3-2 against the Gunners, after Olivier Giroud had put the London side ahead after half-time, things took a strange turn for the former QPR man, with Klopp choosing to throw him on up front, in a bid to rescue a late equaliser.  

Steven Caulker has admitted he questioned whether he was ‘sober’ during his Liverpool debut

The defender was brought on as a forward late on and admitted he was left ‘panicking’ before the game

Jurgen Klopp decided to play him up top and high-fived him after the Reds’ rescued a late equaliser

‘I was sh***** myself and thought “I’m gonna start here,”‘ Caulker told the Under the Couch podcast. ‘Because they had seven centre-halves out injured.

‘And I was thinking “Oh my God, am I even sober? How the f*** am I going to do this?” That train journey up, I was panicking because I hadn’t been taking care of myself, I was a mess.

‘I don’t remember who played centre-half but [Klopp] put someone else in. He said to me ‘go warm up’ but we were losing 3-2. But he said “no, you’re coming on. I’m going to put you up front”.

‘We ended up getting the equaliser and after the game he just came over high-fiving me [and saying] that “they all think it’s crazy until it works.”‘

Caulker would play his part in that goal, attracting the attention of several Arsenal defenders inside the box, freeing up Joe Allan, who thumped home a low volley in a cold and wet night at Anfield to halve the points. 

Klopp would again call upon the defender two games later, sending him on late against Norwich and putting him up top, with Caulker once again proving a nuisance inside the penalty area.

Caulker would go on to make just four appearances for the Merseyside club back in 2016

Caulker was brought in on loan in January 2016 to provide injury cover for the club’s defenders 

Caulker (left) now currently plies his trade in the Championship with Wigan Athletic 

Having been brought back level at 4-4, the defender had the chance to secure the winner with a close-range shot, but it was narrowly blocked by a Norwich defender.

His shot ricocheted up into the air and fell for Adam Lallana, who would strike the ball into the top right corner of the goal to give the Reds a 5-4 win.

During his 14-year career, Caulker has spent time at many different clubs all over Europe, and recently opened up on his issues with alcohol during his time at Liverpool. 

He is now plying his trade at Wigan Athletic having signed as a free agent back in January, making eight appearances for the Latics in the Championship so far this season.  

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