What Happened to Goalkeeper Mile Svilar After Mistake vs Man Utd

Highlights

  • Svilar experienced highs and lows – from a blunder against Man United to saving a penalty in later games.
  • Romelu Lukaku’s touching gesture post-game and Svilar’s resilience after the incident garnered sympathy.
  • Benfica stint low despite youthful CL debut; earned his stripes at AS Roma, now a rising star with new strides.


There are few roles in football filled with the pressure that being a goalkeeper brings. It’s a thankless job and one that can go either right or horribly wrong. Unfortunately for Mile Svilar, it went terribly wrong when he faced Manchester United in the Champions League during the 2017-18 campaign. At just 18 years old, he became the youngest goalkeeper to ever play in the competition.

For the most part, his performance against the Red Devils wasn’t too bad. He made some neat saves and dealt with United’s attacking play fairly comfortably; however, he looked shaky aerially, particularly when dealing with crosses into the area. Despite a fairly solid showing overall, his hard work was completely undone after he made an absolute howler to concede the only goal of the game.


After United won a free-kick towards the left-hand touchline, Marcus Rashford whipped a fierce ball into the area and Svilar caught it fairly routinely. Sounds fine, doesn’t it? Well, unfortunately, the goalkeeper was moving backwards as he caught the ball and the momentum saw him carry it into his own goal. It was a disastrous way to end what had been an impressive showing against the Red Devils, and it was hard not to feel sympathy for him afterwards. Indeed, even some of the United players felt sorry for him.

Mile Svilar


Touching Moment With Lukaku Went Viral

Lukaku spent time consoling Svilar after full-time

Making that disastrous mistake in such a close contest was heartbreaking for Svilar, and some of the United players sympathised with him after the game. Romelu Lukaku, in particular, spent time consoling the promising young goalkeeper after the final whistle.


It was a classy moment from the Belgian striker and one that quickly went viral as the footage emerged online. While it was only a small gesturr from the former United striker, it was one that had a huge impact on the goalkeeper at the time.

Lukaku wasn’t the only Red Devil to take the time to talk to Svilar afterwards, though, with David de Gea also seen speaking to his fellow goalkeeper. Despite being just 18 years old and making the mistake that saw his side lose the game, the keeper showed incredible bravery and maturity, conducting a post-match interview on the night and refusing to shy away from the media.


It would have been easy for Svilar’s head to drop after the incident and for his confidence to plummet, but he bounced back in impressive fashion. In fact, in his next outing against Man Utd, he even managed to save a penalty.

What Happened in His Next Game vs Man Utd

Svilar lost 2-0 but saved a spot-kick

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After making the costly mistake on his Champions League debut against United, the 18-year-old was determined to give a better account of himself the next time around – and he did just that. Despite conceding two goals at Old Trafford in a 2-0 defeat, the teenager also had his moment to shine, saving a penalty to deny Anthony Martial.


The scores were still level at the time, making the moment a huge one for the ‘keeper. That said, Svilar was left with egg on his face once again, this time for scoring an own goal. After Nemanja Matic took aim from distance, his ferocious effort had the keeper beat but struck the post. It came back and ricocheted off the back of the 18-year-old, though, and bounced into the net to give the Red Devils the lead.

There was nothing he could do, and the goal wasn’t the result of a mistake he’d made, it was just unfortunate luck and, for the second Champions League game in a row, he was on the wrong end of an embarrassing mishap. Svilar subsequently became the youngest goalkeeper to save a penalty in the Champions League, but also the youngest player to score an own goal.

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Svilar Spent Next Five Years With Benfica

Struggled for minutes in the Portuguese league

Mile Svilar


Considering he was trusted with Champions League football at just 18 years old, you’d be forgiven for assuming that Svilar was destined for great things at Benfica. After all, it says a lot when the club turns to someone so young to take part in such a big tournament. But things never really got off the ground for him in Portugal.

The Serbian spent five years with Benfica, but saw very limited action in the league during that time. In fact, the majority of his appearances came in cup competitions. He still played just 22 times across his entire tenure in Portugal, though, and things didn’t quite pan out the way many expected.

What’s Happened to Svilar at AS Roma

Rebuilt his reputation and flourishing under De Rossi

Mile Svilar

In a twist of fate, Svilar signed a deal with AS Roma in 2022, joining Jose Mourinho’s side in Italy. The Special One had coincidentally been the United manager during the keeper’s appearances against them in the Champions League at just 18 years old. Despite his howler, the Portuguese manager clearly saw potential in him.


Life came full circle last summer when Lukaku joined Roma on loan, reuniting with his old manager Mourinho, but also teaming up with the promising prospect who he’d consoled all those years earlier. The Belgian has hit the ground running with Roma too, proving to be an instant success in the process.

Svilar, on the other hand, had to wait for his opportunities, playing just four times in his debut campaign at the club. He featured more in European competition this season but was often overlooked for league games in favour of 36-year-old Rui Patricio by Mourinho. Everything changed, though, when Mourinho was sacked in January and replaced by club legend Daniele De Rossi.

Under De Rossi’s management, Svilar is understood to have ‘stunned’ fans and the club’s management alike with his unexpected ascent. Per Roma press, the 24-year-old is now poised to become Roma’s new long-term goalkeeper and will be rewarded with a lucrative new contract.


Named Roma’s Player of the Month for May, it’s clear that Svilar is in the form of his career so far and showing signs of fulfilling the huge potential he showed as a youngster. “A very special season ends for me, with unique emotions which I experienced for the first time in my career,” he told the club’s fans at the end of the 2023-24 campaign. “I can’t wait for next season to start. Thank you so much Roma, you are special. See you soon.”

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