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Loris Karius makes 8 saves in EFL Cup final but it's still not enough

Loris Karius' one-day Redemption Tour is at an end. Playing his first competitive match in nearly two years and his first representing an English club since that infamous night in Kyiv, Karius could not prevent Newcastle's defeat in the EFL Cup final on Sunday as Manchester United scored two goals in a six-minute first-half span to claim the season's first major piece of silverware.

"I have said everything about this," Karius said in the buildup to the match while fielding more questions about his Champions League final collapse. "For me it is tiring to keep talking about it. It's football and things happen."

That adage of "it's football and things happen" could be the perfect descriptor of the German's ill-fated performance on Sunday. 

Newcastle had the first big chance in the 32nd-minute when Allan Saint-Maximin skinned Diogo Dalot before forcing a good save from David de Gea, but just one minute later the Red Devils had the opener.

Bruno Guimarães gave away a cheap free kick out wide and Luke Shaw's devilish delivery forced Karius to stay on his line before Casemiro planted an unsaveable header inside the far post.

Six minutes later, Wout Weghorst played Marcus Rashford into the area and his attempt — initially aimed across the face of goal — took a big deflection off Sven Botman to bloop over Karius with no time for the keeper to react. 

It was a punch in the face to Newcastle after a fine opening 30 minutes, and Antony made sure they understood that.

Manchester United could've scored more if not for the play of Karius, who finished with eight saves and was arguably Newcastle's man of the match. 

But Newcastle's wait for a first major trophy since the 1954-55 FA Cup continues while Man United claims their first since 2017.

Casemiro wants more with the Premier League, FA Cup and Europa League all still on the table. 

For Newcastle the entire focus now shifts to the Premier League as the club aims to qualify for European competition for the first time since the 2012-13 campaign. Karius probably won't play again with Nick Pope and Martin Dúbravka resuming normal duties, but the 29-year-old will have plenty of options this summer when his contract expires.

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