The Premier League has seen many remarkable goalkeepers, but these guys stand out. This list features in The Top 7 Best Goalkeepers in Premier League History. Goalkeepers in the Premier League often face harsh criticism from both media and fans when making even minor mistakes. Check The Top 7 Best Goalkeepers in Premier League History.
Yet, these guys remain composed and do not allow it to influence them. Since the Premier League began two decades ago, these goalkeepers have distinguished themselves as some of the greatest ever to play.
The Top 7 Best Goalkeepers in Premier League History
Over its 30-year history, goalkeeping in the Premier League has evolved significantly. Modern-day keepers must have more outfield player-like characteristics, including controlling and passing accurately.
While “sweeping up” opposing attacks more quickly from further away from the goal. They also tend to be fitter than keepers from the 1990s. Here is the list of the Top 7 Best Goalkeepers in Premier League History.
7. Thibaut Courtois
Thibaut Courtois would rank higher on this list had he seen more action in the Premier League. When he arrived in 2011, Petr Cech was still Chelsea’s go-to goalie, so Courtois was sent on loan to Atletico Madrid for three seasons before returning for four more at Chelsea before ultimately heading over to Real Madrid.
During his time at Chelsea, Courtois won two Premier Leagues, an FA Cup, and League Cup. Additionally, he earned the Golden Glove award for the cleanest sheets recorded in 2017. Courtois is an accomplished modern goalkeeper with few weaknesses. His height allows him to reach more shots than other keepers can, and he excels in one-on-one situations.
6. Shay Given
Shay Given’s career spans nearly all of Premier League history, though he did not become a starter until joining Newcastle in 1997. While with them, he made two FA Cup finals – 1998 for them and 2015 with Aston Villa. Given also won an FA Cup trophy with Manchester City in 2011.
Given was widely respected as a top goalkeeper and was twice selected in the PFA team of the year (2002 and 2006). Outside of Premier League duties, Given earned 134 caps for Ireland’s national team.
5. Brad Friedel
Friedel earned himself the record for most consecutive appearances (310). Furthermore, his 450 appearances ranked as the highest total ever for an American player. At 42, Friedel became one of the oldest players ever to grace the Premier League.
This impressive achievement spoke volumes about his fitness when he played his last match for Tottenham (following an injury to Hugo Lloris). Friedel won the League Cup with Blackburn Rovers in 2002 and led his side to victory. Additionally, he collected the cleanest sheets in 2003 (pre “Golden Glove” award creation in 2005). As such, his peers honored him with inclusion into their PFA Team of the Year squad.
4. Hugo Lloris
Before Hugo Lloris arrived at Spurs in 2012, he enjoyed an outstanding reputation from playing in France for Nice and Lyon. Additionally, since 2009 he has been the number-one goalkeeper for France, with over 140 caps to his name.
At Spurs, Lloris has reached two League Cup finals and one Champions League final without ever winning any silverware with them. But his skill was evident when France won the 2018 World Cup; indeed, he proved himself a talented shot-stopper with agile and quick reflexes and paced off his line.
3. Pepe Reina
Although his Liverpool career eventually faltered, Pepe Reina was the undisputed best goalkeeper in the Premier League for several years – winning three consecutive Golden Glove awards (2006-2008) and boasting an outstanding clean-sheet rate (46%). His clean sheet rate on this list is also among the best among goalkeepers.
Reina won three trophies at Liverpool, including the FA Cup and League Cup, and reached the 2007 Champions League final. Additionally, Aston Villa played in a League Cup final in 2020 as well. Renowned as an excellent sweeper keeper known for being “good with his feet,” Reina proved a masterful penalty saver.
2. David de Gea
De Gea was only 20 when he joined Manchester United from Atletico Madrid, yet he has maintained his spot for over 10 years – a testament to his quality. At United, David de Gea has won many prestigious trophies: Premier League (2013), FA Cup (2018), and two League Cups – and has been chosen to the PFA Team of Year five times.
Additionally, he received the Golden Glove Award. David de Gea is well-known for using his long legs to stop shots with his feet, enabling him to make instinctive saves that other goalkeepers cannot “get down” for with their hands. This video displays some of his more striking saves.
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1. Edwin van der Sar
Upon joining Manchester United at 34 years old in 2005, Edwin van der Sar quickly won four Premier League titles and the 2008 Champions League championship during his six seasons of service at Old Trafford – in 2008-09 alone, going an astounding 1,311 minutes without conceding a goal during a campaign.
Van der Sar’s brilliance was evident before joining United, as evidenced by his 14 trophies won with Ajax (including the 1995 Champions League ) before stints with Juventus and Fulham. At United, he earned 11 additional trophies while being recognized as an individual with 2009 Golden Glove honors and three times being in the PFA team of the year selections.
Van der Sar was known for being swift despite his height (1.97 meters; 6 feet 6 in). His “good with his feet” style inspired other sweeper-keepers like Manuel Neuer, playing 820 club matches and earning 130 caps with his national side.