Best Goalkeepers of 2019
It is clear that 2018/19 was the season that Alisson announced himself as the undisputed No.1 of world football. His arrival at Liverpool saw the Anfield outfit’s defence become as miserly as their attack is exciting, keeping a league-high 21 clean sheets in the English top flight. It was the club’s UEFA Champions League victory that saw their season ultimately crowned a success, keeping five clean sheets (four in the knockout stages) as the Brazilian stopper saw his club campaign conclude with silverware.
It did not stop there. After tasting continental success at club level, he then managed the same with A Seleção, lifting the Copa America in July. Alisson was named the tournament’s best goalkeeper, remarkably not letting in a single goal until the final – meaning he conceded just once in six matches during the tournament.
Liverpool's Alisson Becker has also won the Goalkeeper of the Season award for the 2018/19 UEFA Champions League campaign.
In his first season with the Reds following a move from Roma, Alisson wore the No13 shirt but was a lucky charm throughout as Liverpool won the UEFA Champions League – making key saves in the tight final in Madrid. He also kept 21 Premier League clean sheets, landing the division's Golden Glove award.
But Who Are Other Best Goalkeepers of 2019?
Viewpoints are different, but if you trust UEFA’s 2018/19 jury, here is their final verdict based on the points they have given to top goalkeepers in the world:
- Alisson Becker (Liverpool) – 334 points
- Marc-André ter Stegen (Barcelona) – 136 points
- Hugo Lloris (Tottenham) – 105 points
- Jan Oblak (Atletico Mardrid) – 36 points
- André Onana (Ajax) – 28 points
- Ederson (Manchester City) – 20 points
- Samir Handanović (Inter Milan) – 3 points
- Wojciech Szczęsny (Juventus) – 2 points
- David de Gea (Manchester United) – 2 points
How Was Allison Chosen as No.1 among the Best Goalkeepers of 2019?
The jury comprised of coaches of 32 clubs in the 2018/19 UEFA Champions League group stage, together with 55 journalists selected by the European Sports Media (ESM) group, representing each of UEFA's member associations. Coaches were not allowed to vote for players from their own teams.
Jury members chose their top three players per position, with the first receiving five points, the second three and the third one. The player who received the most points in each category was named the winner.
Alisson Becker in Terms of Honors and Numbers (2018/19)
Honors: UEFA Champions League, Premier League Runner-up
Individual Accolades: UEFA Champions League Squad of the Season, Premier League Golden Glove
Best Goalkeepers of 2019 (The Rest of the List)
Marc-André ter Stegen (Barcelona)
Marc-André ter Stegen is the German goalkeeper of the Spanish club Barcelona and the Germany National Team. Born on 30 April 1992 in Mönchengladbach itself, Ter Stegen did not take long to make his name as one Europe’s most promising young goalkeepers. His previous club was Borussia Mönchengladbach, which he joined in 1996 at the age of just 4, and by the time he was 18 he had already made his first team debut on 10 April 2011 in the Bundesliga against FC Köln. The following season, Ter Stegen was named the best goalkeeper in the Bundesliga and went on to complete four seasons and 108 matches in the German league.
After four seasons in the Bundesliga with Borussia Mönchengladbach, making 108 league appearances, he joined Barcelona for €12 million in 2014. He won the treble in his first season in Spain, playing for Barcelona in Copa del Rey and UEFA Champions League. In 2014/15 season, the goalkeeper played every game in the Champions League and had a leading role in the Copa del Rey, both of which Barca won. He became the team's number one goalkeeper in 2016/17, starting in La Liga and the Champions League, bringing his total appearances with Barca to 141.
Ter Stegen he should have been Germany's first-choice keeper at Russia 2018, only for Neuer to get the nod ahead of him on reputation alone. Remember that Ter Stegen is still only 27 and thus has his best years ahead of him. He’ll be ready and waiting when Neuer hangs up his gloves.
Hugo Lloris (Tottenham)
Hugo Hadrien Dominique Lloris is a French professional goalkeeper and is both the captain of Tottenham Hotspur and the France National Team. He is a three-time winner of the National Union of Professional Footballers (UNFP) Ligue 1 Goalkeeper of the Year Award.
Hugo Lloris was one of the best keepers in the Premier League 2017/18 season, conceding a league-best 17 goals in 2015 minutes of competition, with 23 clean sheets. He was a big reason why Spurs had the best defensive record in the league and were undefeated that season at White Hart Lane. Lloris won over a field that included Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea), Alex Smithies (QPR), Darren Randolph (West Ham) and Tottenham academy graduate Jordan Archer (Millwall).
Hugo’s ability to pull off breathtaking saves is among the best in the Premier League, and he remains a huge asset to his manager Mauricio Pochettino at Tottenham. He still has his moments, as he proved with that bizarre balls-up in the World Cup final against Croatia last summer. He was also magnificent throughout the tournament and followed that up by leading Spurs to their first ever Champions League final.
Jan Oblak (Atletico Madrid)
Jan Oblak is the Slovenian goalkeeper of the Spanish Club Atletico Madrid and the Slovenia National Team. Oblak signed for Portuguese club Benfica at the age of 17, and was part of the team that won the domestic treble in the 2013/14 season. He then moved to Atletico Madrid for a sum of €16 million, becoming La Liga's most expensive goalkeeper at that time. In 2015/16 he won the Ricardo Zamora Trophy for best goalkeeper, conceding an all-time record low of 18 goals.
He won the award again in the following three seasons. Oblak was also nominated for the 2017 and 2018 Ballon d'Or awards, following his consistent performances with his club. 2019 has seen Oblak, aided by his Atleti teammates, go 25 games out of 46 without conceding a goal, an impressive 54.3%. The only goalkeeper that gets close to him in this regard has been Marc Ter Stegen, who has prevented the opposition getting the better of him in 22 of 49 matches (44.9%).
In 2018, Oblak played 50 games and did not concede in 27 of them (54%). Taking a more holistic look, since arriving at the Madrid club in the summer of 2014 he has achieved it in 128 of his 232 matches, an incredible 55.2%. Oblak is surely one of the best goalkeepers in the world and was also one of the nominees for the world's best goalkeeper award, but Alisson Becker, Champions League and Copa América winner with Liverpool and Brazil respectively took the award.
André Onana (Ajax)
André Onana is a Cameroonian professional goalkeeper who plays for Dutch club Ajax and also is the goalkeeper of the Cameroon National Team. Onana joined Barcelona in 2010 at age 13, and in early January 2015, it was announced that he would join Dutch club Ajax. He made his debut for Jong Ajax in the Eerste Divisie in February 2015. He signed a new contract with Ajax in May 2017, running until 2021 and in March 2019 he signed a further new contact until June 2022.
In May 2019, Onana spoke out about being a black goalkeeper, saying they had to work harder than their white counterparts due to misconceptions about them making mistakes.
Throughout a campaign equally gruelling as unforgettable, Onana has experienced it all — from an epic European adventure, featuring memorable matches against Real Madrid, Juventus and Tottenham, to a league and cup double. But that’s not enough to satisfy the 23-year-old who is craving further success at the Africa Cup of Nations, as Cameroon look to defend their continental crown on July 19.
23-year-old Onana, formerly of Barcelona, has proved himself as one of the most talented young players in Europe over recent seasons, making an impressive 116 appearances for Ajax, and has gathered interest from an array of clubs.
Ederson (Manchester City)
Ederson Santana de Moraes arrived at Manchester City on 1 July 2017 with a reputation as one of the brightest young goalkeeping prospects in world football. He’s fulfilled his early promise in Manchester, establishing himself as one of the best keepers in England, winning two Premier League titles, two Carabao Cups, an FA Cup and the Community Shield in the process.
He began his youth career in his native Brazil with São Paulo FC, before venturing into Europe aged 16 to sign with Benfica. It was in Portugal where his professional career began, initially with second-tier outfit Ribeirão, where his form earned him a move to Primeira Liga side, Rio Ave. During a three year stay he played 63 games in all competitions and enhanced his reputation so much so that Benfica brought him back to the Stadium of Light in 2015.
He penned a six-year deal and three months later, in October 2017, made his senior debut for Brazil, keeping a clean sheet in a 3-0 World Cup qualifying win over Chile. Ederson enjoyed a fantastic first campaign with City, keeping 16 clean sheets as an integral part of the Club’s Premier League success. His form earned him a PFA Young Player of the Year nomination and saw him selected in Brazil’s 2018 World Cup squad.
His form earned him a PFA Young Player of the Year nomination and saw him selected in Brazil’s 2018 World Cup squad. Twenty clean sheets saw him named in the PFA Team of the Year, whilst he also saved a penalty in the shootout as City beat Chelsea to lift the Carabao Cup. Ederson’s fantastic footwork, including the sheer distance of some his kicks, has generated much admiration at the Etihad Stadium and in May 2018 he broke the Guinness World Record for the longest drop kick, registering 75.35 metres.
Samir Handanović (Inter Milan)
193cm tall and 89kg in weight, Samir Handanović is a very agile goalkeeper with rapid reactions and a particular strength in saving penalties. His professional career began with Domzale, and at a young age he quickly attracted the attention of Udinese, who signed him and sent him out on loan to Treviso, Lazio and Rimini. After returning to Udine, Handanovic earned himself a starting spot in the first team with some especially impressive figures in the 2010/11 season. He didn’t concede a goal for 704 minutes and succeeded in saving six of the eight penalties he faced (a record for penalty saves in a single league season).
Handanović signed for the Nerazzurri in the summer of 2012, stepping into the big shoes left behind by Julio Cesar, and his Serie A TIM debut for Inter came on 16 September in a 2-0 win against Torino. Handanovic confirmed his reputation as an expert penalty-saver, keeping all but one of the eight he faced out of the Nerazzurri net between 2014 and 2015, a statistic that places him second in the all-time rankings only behind Gianluca Pagliuca.
Handanovic made nine saves against Barcelona on 24 October 2018, matchday three of the Champions League, a record for an Inter goalkeeper in the Champions League equalled only by Toldo against Arsenal in 2003. On the final day of the league last season, with Inter at home to Empoli, Handanovic was awarded the Golden Glove for the 2018/19 Serie A season.
He flawlessly protected the Nerazzurri goal in 17 league games, keeping 20 clean sheets across all competitions over the whole season. Handanovic represented the Slovenia National Team from 2004 until his international retirement in 2016, recording 80 appearances.
The Inter shot-stopper has been ever-reliable while those around him haven’t, and aged 35 has somehow seemed to get better with each season. He is proof that you can teach an old dog new tricks, too: under Luciano Spalletti, Inter’s more patient build-up play forced Handanovic to adjust his game accordingly.
Wojciech Szczęsny (Juventus)
Wojciech Tomasz Szczęsny is the Polish goalkeeper of Serie A club Juventus and the Poland National Team. After starting his club career at Legia Warsaw, Szczęsny signed for Arsenal in 2006, where he made his professional debut in 2009. He later became the first choice goalkeeper of his team, winning two FA Cups and being the joint recipient of the 2013–14 Premier League Golden Glove with Petr Čech.
He subsequently went on two consecutive season-long loans to Italian club Roma in 2015, where his performances earned him a move to reigning league champions Juventus in 2017.
After serving mainly as a back-up to Gianluigi Buffon in his first season, during which he won a domestic double, he inherited the starting spot from the departed Buffon the following season, winning his second Serie A title; his performances also earned him a Yashin Trophy nomination in 2019. At international level, Szczęsny has earned more than 40 caps for Poland since his debut in 2009, and was included in the nation's squad as it co-hosted UEFA Euro 2012, also later taking part at UEFA Euro 2016 and the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Szczęsny’ first appearance for Juventus was On 9 September 2017, achieving a clean sheet as he started in their third match of the season, a 3–0 home win over Chievo in Serie A. On 9 May, Szczęsny won his first trophy with Juventus in a 4–0 win over Milan in the 2018 Coppa Italia Final; in fact, he was an unused substitute in this match. Four days later, on 13 May, Szczęsny won the Scudetto, after keeping a clean sheet in a 0–0 draw with his former team Roma, in Juventus' penultimate match of the season.
David de Gea (Manchester United)
David de Gea Quintana is the Spanish goalkeeper of Premier League club Manchester United and the Spain National Team. There are plenty who believe De Gea to be the best goalkeeper in the world, and with performances like those against Tottenham in 2018/19 and Arsenal in 2017/18 – the latter a genuinely match-winning 14-save display – it’s very difficult to argue against it. Indeed, he’s regarded as one of the best goalkeepers in the world.
De Gea began his playing career with Atletico Madrid. After being made Atletico's first-choice goalkeeper, he helped the team win the UEFA Europa League and the UEFA Super Cup in 2010. His performances subsequently attracted the attention of Manchester United, and De Gea joined the club in June 2011 for £18.9 million. Since joining United, De Gea has made over 300 appearances and won a Premier League title, an FA Cup, a League Cup, three Community Shields and the UEFA Europa League.
For three consecutive seasons from 2013/14 to 2015/16, he was elected as United's Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year, the first player in the award's history to win on three successive occasions (four in total). De Gea has been named in the PFA Team of the Season for five of the last seven seasons, and scooped Match of the Day’s Save of the Season the same number of times since 2013.
He combines the two traits few goalkeepers ever get to boast at the time same: the capability of making gravity-defying saves, and consistency that almost eradicates mistakes from his game.