'He's horrible': Croatia fans slam Aston Villa goalkeeper Lovre Kalinic

Dean Smith, manager of Aston Villa looks on during the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Middlesbrough at Villa Park on March 16, 2019 in Birmingham, England.

Lovre Kalinic has been left on the bench for Aston Villa's last five Championship games and did not exactly impress in Croatia's Euro 2020 qualifier.

Lovre Kalinic of Croatia during the UEFA Nations League A group four match between England and Croatia at Wembley Stadium on November 18, 2018 in London, United Kingdom.

It is fair to say Lovre Kalinic has not had an easy start to 2019.

Aston Villa paid £7 million to sign the shot-stopper from Gent in January (Telegraph) and, on paper, an established Croatia international who won the Belgian Goalkeeper of the Year award in 2017 looked like a substantial upgrade on the unconvincing Orjan Nyland.

But Kalinic is yet to live up to those lofty expectations – or that hefty price-tag. After a nervy start to life at Villa, including an error-strewn debut against Swansea City in the FA Cup, the 28-year-old has been dropped to the bench for his new club’s last five Championship games.

Lovre Kalinic of Aston Villa in action during a training session  at Bodymoor Heath training ground on January 03, 2019 in Birmingham, England.

Villa are unbeaten since Jed Steer was given his chance between the sticks, winning their last four. It doesn’t look good for Kalinic, then.

The last thing he needed was another questionable performance during the international break. Croatia lost 2-1 away at Hungary in a Euro 2020 qualifier this week and Kalinic could certainly have done better with both goals.

He let Hungary’s first slip through his hands before being caught in no-man’s land as the hosts netted the winner from a corner. Croatia fans were furious. Have Villa signed another goalkeeping dud?

Lovre Kalinic of Aston Villa during the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Ipswich Town at Villa Park on January 26, 2019 in Birmingham, England.

 

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