Some people say goalkeepers aren't real footballers. All they do is just stand there and occasionally save a few shots, howeveR I beg to differ. Goalkeepers are just as important as a striker. Goalkeepers are the second pair of eyes, they are the manager on the pitch (in ways), they boost morale. Goalkeepers produce match winning saves and also match saving saves, in penalty shoot outs they are your sole hope. These next fve young men are who I think are the top five young goalkeepers in the world today. (In no particular order)
1. Manuel Neuer
Neuer momentairly plays for Bayern Munich after arriving from Schalke last year. At the age of 26 he has shown exactly what he is made of. Cementing his place in the German national team and becoming a firm favourite and idol for millions around the world. So why do I think he is one of the best goal keepers? This is why, here is a montage of all his sublime saves...
Neuer is a role model for all aspiring goalkeepers out there. He is ruthless, brave, resilient, confident, at times arrogant but you know what, that makes all traits of an amazing goal keeper. He knows when to go and when to stay, went to play safe and when to show off for the cameras. Of course he isn't perfect and yes he does make some mistakes but from them mistakes he learns and works on them and makes them almost perfect, to make himself the almost perfect goalkeeper, causing him to display himself on the radar of every manager in Europe.
2. Joe Hart
Hart plays for Manchester City and firmly placing a tight grip on the number one spot in the English national team. At the age of 25 he is accomplishing things that others can only dream of. Beating Manchester United 6-1, winning the Premier League. Openly admitting it was his love of being covered mud that landed him goal makes us think would that talent have gone unnoticed? We sure are glad he did take up goalkeeping because we get to be entertained week in week out by his tremendous saves.
Relishing every oppurtunity he gets and ferociously conquering any barriers that get put in front of him. This is just some of the reasons why I find him to be one of the worlds best goalkeepers.
His constant reliable presence and consistency are what keep him firmly in the Manchester City and England goal. However for us, it is his witty character, his sublime saves and the fact he recognises he is part of the team and is not dominated my the 'ego' that most other players are dominated by.
3. Wojciech Szczesny
Szczesny plays for Arsenal and is holding the reigns of the number one spot. Even though he had a pretty poor Euro 2012 tournament he is still in my top five. Simple because he is a brilliant goalkeeper. At the tender age of 21 he is making a name for himself, balancing out with the good and the poor. He may make a poor decision but then redeem himself with a string of fine, beyond his years saves. Szczesny holds many doubters and if you like haters but he doesn't let that stop he is still acts like a confident and determined goal keeper, beyond capable of achieving great things. Here is a compilation of why I think he is one of the best in the world today and one to look out for...
His consistancy in the Arsenal XI gives the team an extra boost of confidence because he is reliable and he is extremely vocal, he comands his back four and is very very brave, not shying away from anything and going after everything he see's fit ultimately improving Arsenal's area of set pieces. Szczesny almost seems to me like the Christiano Ronaldo of goal keeping. He is confident and plays with a swagger thus making him just like marmite, you either love him or hate him, I love him and I know he will, in years to come, win over his haters/skeptics.
Vorm plays for Swansea City and Michel Vorm was never really on my radar until last season. At the age of 28 I often wonder to myself 'why have I not seen him before?' Last season I believe Vorm was just as valuable as Sigurdsson or Graham or Allen or Britton. A stand out game for me was when Swansea were playing Liverpool and he basically single handedly kept the score to a minimum even securing them valuable points. If you didn't see last season why he is a stand out for me or are not yet on board, here is a compilation of some of his best saves...
He never stops amazing me even after I've seen the saves one or two maybe three times. It amazes me how athletic he is, how he is able to make some of the saves he does it is sublime. This man has made many match winning saves, match saving saves and he will only continue to get better. He is only 28 which means he has many years left in him and he will continue suprising and taking us to new levels. All we can do is stand in absolute awe in him. Usually when a striker surpasses the defence it is odds on to score however with this guy it is still severly hard. He makes himself big and threatening. He is a huge presence in that Swansea goal and after last seasons performance it will continue to bug me on why he never got the chance to play at the Euros.
5. Tim Krul
Tim Krul plays for Newcastle United and is well into his prime time at the age of 24. Some people say goalkeepers are better when they are around the age of 27 or 28 however this guy proves that it doesn't matter what age you are, you can still be sublime to the point of no explanation. Krul has a very good defensive system around him and for long periods of games he is a mere spectator but when he is called into action he has still maintained his concentraion and deals with the problem effectively and immediatley. Krul took the number one spot a couple of years ago from Steve Harperand here is why...
Krul is strong and reliable. He rarely makes mistakes and when he does he puts them right making sure the mistakes don't become consitent. A cosistent presence in the Newcastle goal he is determined and is a no mess goal keeper. He deals with problems in the best way possible sometimes making few errors but he always has his defenders to clean it up. Another example of a mind boggling problem, why wasn't he the first choice at the Euros? Only 24, Tim Krul will continue getting better and potentially in the future being snapped up by a better club than Newcastle United.
There were many choices for my top five goalkeepers and yes I know the majority of them play in the Premier League and that is not because of preference that is because the Premier League is a top, possibly the hardest most ferocious domestic league in the world and to be able to stay in there you need to have some pretty good goal keepers and these guys are. Combined these five goal keepers had a total of 42 clean sheets last season, not bad.