Former Stoke City midfielder Liam Lawrence has expressed his desire for Stoke City fans to get off Jack Butland’s back, after the keeper’s poor start to the season.
Butland has started both of the Potters’ opening fixtures against QPR and Charlton, which both ended in defeats.
The England keeper has had his early season critics after mistakes in either game. Against QPR, he came out of his goal but failed to retrieve the ball successfully.
Whilst against Charlton, Lyle Taylor’s strike, which was seemingly down the middle of the goal, went straight through his hands.
Butland was England’s third choice keeper during their Nations League Finals last summer, although his place could be under threat with Tom Heaton, Dean Henderson and Angus Gunn all starting for Premier League clubs this season.
If the 26-year-old still wants to play at a higher level, the transfer window shuts in most foreign leagues on the 2nd of September.
Speaking to the Stoke Sentinel, Lawrence said: “I would urge those having a go to get off his back and to get a grip.
“The lad has saved us an untold amount of points over the years and remains one of our prized assets.
“A couple of recent mistakes doesn’t change that, just as it didn’t change anything for David de Gea after a couple of uncharacteristic errors at Old Trafford last season.
“I happened to be sitting near Butland, Joe Allen and a few others on Tuesday night and I can tell you they were clapping and encouraging team-mates every time we did something good.
“And how good to see Butland training with the keepers before the game. A true pro.”
Jack Butland is and will be a very good Championship goalkeeper over the course of this season. Everyone makes mistakes from time to time, and Butland is no different.
However, Stoke City fans do have reason to worry.
It is very out of character from Butland to be making mistakes in the way he had, potentially meaning his mind might be elsewhere.
He’ll get out of this rut, and it’s important the Potters fans support him through it.
Lawrence is right, the way to make Butland feel confident again is to know that he has the support from those around him.