Erol Bulut Says Runarsson Not To Blame For Southampton Defeat

Hamish Woodward

Cardiff City manager Erol Bullet has backed goalkeeper Alex Runarsson, claimg “he could not do anything” about the goals in this weekends match.

The on-loan Arsenal keeper let in two goals in Saturday’s 2-0 loss against Southampton, leaving the Bluebirds 11th in the Championship – although only three points away from Hull City in sixth.

The Icelandic goalkeeper has been brought into the team in recent weeks, replacing fan-favourite keeper Jan Alnwick between the posts. This hasn’t gone well for Cardiff, who have lost their last four games, conceding eight goals with Runarsson in goal.

“I heard about it [criticism], but I am not of that opinion,” Bulut said, speaking to the press following Saturday’s 2-0 loss to Southampton.

“In the last game at Southampton, with the two goals we conceded, he could not do anything.

“So if we want to speak about mistakes we can speak about many things but not that Alex Runarsson made a mistake and we conceded a goal.

“Against Preston, maybe it was tough with the goal he conceded, that was a difficult situation.

“We have to see the whole picture, where the mistake starts and ends.”

Bulut defended his keeper, claiming every player makes mistakes in football, “I will never say in front of the press that certain players have made mistakes and we lost. You will never hear that from me. I will speak individually to my players.

“I will never say because of one person we won or lost. We are a team and we win together and we lose together.”

Runarsson is likely to start the Championship home game against Millwall on Saturday, though Bulut is aware his season long loan signing has led to some of the criticism.

“All of them [the players] are on social media. So when I get it [criticism] he gets it too,” he said.

“We support him like I support all my players. I spoke to Jak, he has played some great games for us, but he lost a bit of confidence after the Watford game.

“He is a great guy and we have two great goalkeepers. We will continue with Alex, but there will be a day when we continue with Jak. They have to support each other.”

However, when asked if he was being pressured by Mikel Arteta to play the 28-year old Iceland keeper, Erol Bulut completely refuted the accusation, claiming Runarsson is “very good with the ball” and that “some mistakes will happen.

“For sure that is not (the case),” said Bulut. “He is 28, for a goalkeeper that is nothing. He is very good with the ball …. some mistakes will happen, that has happened to many big goalkeepers.

“So you cannot say if you make one mistake you are out. I will not say this to my players to put them under pressure.”

Alex Runarsson looks set to keep him place in the side when Cardiff City face Millwall on Saturday, as they chase their first win in six games. The Bluebirds’ play-off hopes hang in the balance, as Cardiff City have outshone expectations following a narrow rescue from relegation at the end of last season.

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