Mark Travers not giving up Irish keeper spot without a fight

Mark Travers

Is there any way we can play with three goalkeepers?

Caoimhin Kelleher was given his chance to shine for Liverpool against Chelsea last Sunday, and he did just that, earning plaudits from Gary Neville and the wider football world.

Gavin Bazunu has firmly established himself as Ireland’s number one goalkeeper, with some genuinely incredible performances in World Cup qualifiers and Nations League matches.

So spare a thought for Mark Travers, now Ireland’s third choice keeper, who is legitimately having one of the best seasons out of every goalkeeper in England.

Still somehow only 22 years of age, Travers is now Bournemouth’s starting goalkeeper every week, and he has repaid Scott Parker’s faith in abundance.

He finds his team three points clear at the top of the Championship, having conceded just 20 goals in 25 league games so far.

His performances have been so impressive that he finds himself in the top five goalkeepers in England when it comes to save percentages.

Mark Travers fighting for his place

Only Jose Sa (Wolves) and Edouard Mendy (Chelsea) have a better save percentage than the young Maynooth man, and it’s starting to look extremely likely he’s going to be a Premier League keeper next season.

Many Irish football fans will remember Travers’ extremely unfortunate performance against Serbia back in March of last year.

However, he has clearly not let that game get him down, and it’s clear when watching him play that he has an elite mentality.

If Travers does make it to the Premier League and maintains these performances at the highest level of football, Kelleher and Bazunu will seriously have their work cut out for themselves. Could Stephen Kenny possibly ignore a goalkeeper playing week in, week out in the top flight?

It is undeniably a good problem for Kenny and Ireland to have, but it doesn’t make it any less frustrating that it seems like a genuine possibility that we will have three top class players at our disposal, and only one of them will be able to start.

Can Kelleher play up front, by any chance?

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