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Best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021

Sat 05 March 2022 | 20:29

Who were top-performing goalies in the German top-flight during the year that passed? Which footballers managed to attract the most attention with their impressive performance throughout the whole year? Read on as we take a look at the careers of some of the best Bundesliga goalkeepers in 2021.

The German top-flight in football, also known as the Bundesliga, is one of the most famous football league in Europe and the whole world. It is considered to be one of the top-5 leagues in the whole continent and we have been blessed to witness clubs such as Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund grace the pitch with their star-studded squads every season.

However, the German league is not all about the intense rivalry between these two sides and there are many more exciting teams playing beautiful football in the Bundesliga. Every year, we get to see some footballers set foot onto the big stage by performing at their best with a long-term consistency. That is exactly when Bayern Munich comes in knocking to sign those top performers in order to add to their own strength and stop their rivals from gaining more and more power.

But the Bavarians are only a single clubs and can’t afford to sign every top player in the league, which is why we still get to enjoy seeing some of the best footballers in the league grace the pitch at other German teams. While forwards and midfielders are the ones who usually hog all the attention away from the defenders and especially goalkeepers, those serving in the backline receive their much-deserved plaudits as well.

But who were the

best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021

? Who managed to wow the viewers with their incredible saves week-in week-out? Surely you too are eager to find out more about the greatest Bundesliga goalkeepers in 2021. So follow us below as we take a look at the careers of these top-performers and get to see how they and their current teams have fared in the German top-flight so far.

Best Bundesliga goalkeepers in 2021

From Bayern Munich’s Manuel Neuer, who is the obvious choice on this list, who the likes of Freiburg’s Mark Flekken and Union Berlin’s Andreas Luthe, there are many great talents on the list Bundesliga best goalkeepers in 2021. So without further ado, here is everything you need to know about these top-performing goalies and their respective careers so far.

Yann Sommer

  • Team: Borussia Monchengladbach

  • Market value: €5M

We all came to know and love Yann Sommer in Euro 2020 as the Switzerland international stole our hearts with his incredible performance in the tournament. Sommer’s brilliance in goal pushed Switzerland further and further in the European competition as we got to enjoy every moment the Swiss national team graced the pitch alongside Sommer. The 33-year-old goalkeeper did not get to lift the Euro 2020 cup at the end of the tournament, yet he got to receive the respect and love of everyone who watched him serve his country.

Sommer started his career as an FC Basel academy graduate by joining the club’s senior side back in 2006. He went on to spend some time on loan at other Swiss clubs, before returning to Basel in 2010. He spent four years as their main goalkeeper and went on to switch clubs in 2014 by joining

Borussia Monchengladbach

for €9 million. Since then, the Swiss goalie has been incredible asset for the German club and that is why he is still lauded as one of the best goalkeepers in the German top-flight.

Manuel Riemann

  • Team: VfL Bochum

  • Market value: €1M

Manuel Riemann is one of those goalkeepers who tends to deliver adequate and at times impressive performances with consistency. The 33-year-old goalie has spent his entire career in Germany, playing for clubs such as Burghausen, Osnabruck, Sandhausen and now

Bochum

, whom he joined on a free transfer deal way back in 2015. Since his arrival, Riemann has helped his side earn a promotion to Germany’s top-flight after spending several years in the second tier of German league.

This season is his first time in the Bundesliga and he has already proven to be one of the

best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021

. Riemann’s stats in the current season are quite impressive as he is currently one of the solidest shot-stoppers in the whole country. He has managed to keep 7 clean sheets throughout the season, while only conceding 32 goals in the process of 25 games across all competitions.

Bochum have impressed everyone in their first season in the Bundesliga as they are way above the relegation zone and are fighting for their place in the middle of table. Bochum are currently sitting 11th on the league table with 29 points in 24 league games and have got themselves quite the opportunity to shoot for a better position on the league table.

Their main rivals are Eintracht Frankfurt and Mainz, who are only a couple of points above Die Unabsteigbaren. Being one of the greatest Bundesliga goalkeepers in 2021, Riemann will certainly be immortalized at his club as he has significantly improved his side’s status in Germany.

Stefan Ortega

  • Team: Arminia Bielefeld

  • Market value: €6M

Manuel Riemann is not the only one on the list of

best Bundesliga goalkeepers in 2021

who has helped their respective club reach the pinnacle of German football in recent years. There are other great talents such as Stefan Ortega, who has served Arminia Bielefeld well since joining them from 1860 Munich on a free transfer deal in 2017.

Arminia Bielefeld

had already managed to earn a promotion to the 2. Bundesliga after spending several years in the third tier of German football.

But it was with Ortega’s arrival that they managed to pull themselves up even more and reach the top-flight in the 2020-21 season. The 29-year-old was one of the top performers in the league since his debut in the previous campaign, during which he got to make a total of 35 appearances across all competitions, keeping 11 clean sheets and conceding 53 goals in the process.

With a market value of €6 million, the former 1860 Munich goalie is yet to reach his previous record as he currently has 6 clean sheets to his name in 25 games across all competitions this season. While VfL Bochum are quite comfortable in their position in the middle of the table, Arminia have had it tougher this season as they are only a couple of points above the relegation zone and a slip-up could mean relegation for the German side.

We will have to wait and see if Ortega, as one of the best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021, could help his side stay in the German top-flight for the next season, or if they will have to face the consequences of poor results in the coming weeks.

Koen Casteels

  • Team: VfL Wolfsburg

  • Market value: €14M

VfL

Wolfsburg

might not be doing so well in the league this season as they are currently 12th on the league table with 28 points in 24 games so far, but their captain Koen Casteels has been brilliant nonetheless. Perhaps Casteels is one of the few reasons why Wolfsburg are not drowning deep in the relegation zone and still have a chance to pull themselves up in the coming months. The Belgian goalkeeper started his career after graduating from KRC Genk’s youth academy and joining their senior squad back in 2009.

He went on to join TSG Hoffenheim in 2011, before signing for Wolfsburg in the 2015 January transfer window. Of course the Belgian had to spend the remainder of that season on loan at Werder Bremen, before finally convincing his side that he is worthy of being on the starting-XI sheet. Even though Wolfsburg used to be amongst the top clubs in Germany back then, Casteels is still one of the top-performers in the league and was actually one of the

best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021

as well.

The 29-year-old made a total of 37 appearances for the Wolves in the 2020-21 season, keeping a phenomenal number of 18 clean sheets and only conceding 35 goals in the process. Casteels proved to virtually be an impenetrable wall in the previous season, which is exactly why Wolsburg managed to finish the season in a Champions League spot, instead of fighting for their lives at the bottom of the table.

Casteels has not been quite as impressive in the 2021-22 season as he has kept 8 clean sheets in the process of 28 games across all competitions so far, conceding 41 goals throughout the campaign. However, even with the poor results that his team are getting, the 29-year-old Belgium international has managed to prove time and time again why he was on the list of Bundesliga best goalkeepers in 2021 and why he is considered to be one of the best in the business in the new year as well. 

Oliver Baumann

  • Team: TSG Hoffenheim

  • Market value: €5M

Next on the list of

greatest Bundesliga goalkeepers in 2021

is Oliver Baumann, who has been TSG

Hoffenheim

’s main goalkeeper for more than seven years, having joined the German club from SC

Freiburg

for €5.5 million in the summer of 2014. Baumann was a Freiburg youth academy graduate who had joined the club’s senior side in 2009. He went on to impress everyone during his spell at his parent club.

However, it was after his move to Hoffenheim that Baumann blossomed into what he was destined to be. He stuck with his club through thick and thin and delivered incredible performances year-in-year-out. Now, at the age of 31, the German goalie is still considered to be amongst the top goalies in the league and he actually proved to be one of the best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021 as he managed to keep 10 clean sheets in 40 games across all competitions.

Even though he got to concede 61 goals in the process of those games, Baumann still helped his side finish in a European tournament spot, which is exactly what he has been doing in the current season as well. Hoffenheim are currently sitting sixth on the league table with 40 points in 24 games. They are on level terms with both SC Freiburg and RB Leipzig, who have also accumulated 40 points in 24 games.

That is why there is quite a good chance for Baumann and his teammates to push further upwards and finish the season in a Champions League spot for the next season. It is up for debate whether Sebastian Hoeness can lead his men to a better position on the league table in the coming weeks or not. But he can surely count on Oliver Baumann to deliver impressive performances with great consistency for the rest of the season.

Peter Gulacsi

  • Team: RB Leipzig

  • Market value: €11M

RB Leipzig

were the only ones who stood a chance against the extremely formidable Bayern Munich side in the 2020-21 season. We all know by now that Bayern Munich’s simplest and most effective strategy for staying at the top is to sign every top performer from every Germain team in the top-flight in order to both weaken their opponents while boosting their own squad strength at the same time.

That is why Leipzig struggled to find their best form early on in the current season after their manager and two of their best players left the club to join the Bavarians in the summer transfer window. However, just as mentioned before, Bayern can’t sign all the stars in a team and some are bound to stay and serve their club for years.

One of these stars, who has been a sensationally effective part of RB Leipzig, is the 31-year-old Peter Gulacsi, who was one of the best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021 as he helped his side compete with the Bavarians for the league title itself until the very end. Gulacsi has played for several clubs throughout his career, including

Liverpool

, Tranmere Rovers, Hull City and RB Salzburg.

He joined Leipzig from their sister club RB

Salzburg

for €3 million in the summer of 2015 and has since been an integral part of his side every season. The Hungary international was without a doubt one of the

Bundesliga best goalkeepers in 2021

as he helped his side relentlessly chase Bayern Munich in the title race. Gulacsi made a total of 47 appearances for RB Leipzig in the 2020-21 season and managed to keep an impressive number of 20 clean sheets, while conceding 51 goals in the process.

These stats certainly put the Hungarian amongst the world-class goalies and that is why he has managed to retain his past form in the second half of the current season as well. Leipzig are currently fourth in the league with 40 points in 24 games and could earn a spot in next season’s Champions League if they can hold on to their current position for the rest of the season.

Robin Zentner

  • Team: FSV Mainz

  • Market value: €5M

Robin Zentner is yet another one of the best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021, who has managed to keep his consistency for the current season as well. The German goalie is an original FSV Mainz youth academy product, who initially joined their senior squad after his graduation in the summer of 2014. Zentner went on to spend some time on loan at Holstein Kiel in order to further hone his skills and return as an experienced goalkeeper.

After spending two years at the German club, he returned home to Mainz in 2017 and has since been one of the most essential parts of his side. Zentner’s market value saw a sudden rise in the 2020-21 season and has since been increasing without any stops as he continues to impress with his current form. The 27-year-old made a total of 33 appearances for Mainz in the 2020-21 season and managed to keep 5 clean sheets in the process, a record which he has already broken in the current campaign.

His 2021-22 season has been much more impressive so far, especially given the fact that his club are currently roaming the top-half of the league table. Mainz are currently ninth in the German top-flight with 34 points in 24 league games and they have one of the best defensive records in the entire league, having conceded 29 goals in the process of those games. Zentner has managed to keep 8 clean sheets in the current season and we are certainly witnessing one of the best shot-stoppers in Germany grace the pitch every week.

Lukas Hradecky

  • Team: Bayer Leverkusen

  • Market value: €6M

Next on the list of best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021 is Lukas Hradecky, who has helped

Bayer Leverkusen

switch positions with RB Leipzig to become one of the main title contenders in the 2021-22 campaign. Even though the Bavarians are too powerful to be threatened by Leverkusen and are comfortably sitting at the top with a 14-point lead over Leverkusen and an 8-point lead against Borussia Dortmund, it still does now downplay Leverkusen’s efforts to reach the top-3 in the Bundesliga.

The German club’s strikers have been on fire this season as they have managed to score 63 goals in 24 games so far. The addition of Sardar Azmoun in the January transfer window will certainly boost their offensive strength even more and that is why having a solid defense is of utmost importance if they want to keep their winning records consistent enough to surpass Dortmund in the coming weeks.

With that goal in mind, Leverkusen have turned to Lukas Hradecky for keeping the ball out of their net and the Finnish goalie has done a pretty good job so far. Hradecky gained prominence as a talented goalkeeper after joining Einracht Frankfurt from Brondby IF for €2.5 million in 2015. He joined Leverkusen on a free transfer deal in the summer of 2018 and has since been a vital part of his club. Hradecky’s performance in the 2020-21 season was definitely better, compared to his performance so far in the current season.

He managed keep 10 cleans sheets while conceding 40 goals in 37 games across all competitions in the previous campaign, yet he has already conceded more than 40 goals in fewer appearances this season and is yet to surpass his clean sheets record. Despite a relatively poorer form in the current season, Hradecky is still considered to be one of the top goalkeepers in Bundesliga and he could help his side surpass Borussia Dortmund to finish the season only below Bayern Munich.

Gregor Kobel

  • Team: Borussia Dortmund

  • Market value: €20M

Looking at all the great prospects, who have immense potential to become world-class footballers in the coming years, we can all agree that the future of football is in good hands and we do not need to worry about not having enough talents to enjoy watching. The next generation of footballers has already hit the market and Gregor Kobel is certainly one of the most promising ones out there.

The Swiss goalkeeper has already played for several clubs throughout his short career, including TSG Hoffenheim, FC

Augsburg

, VfB Stuttgard and now

Borussia Dortmund

. He joined his current club in the summer of 2021 for €15 million and has since been an incredible asset for Marco Rose. Even though he was not a Dortmund player in the first half of the year that passed, he still managed to be amongst the best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021 as he served VfB Stuttgart with his incredible performances.

The 24-year-old is still too young to be considered amongst the greatest goalkeepers in the world and will have to work a lot harder to reach such a status. But 8 clean sheets in 34 games across all competitions this season is without a doubt a promising sign from the Switzerland international.

We will have to wait and see if Kobel can help Borussia Dortmund in their task to finally beat Bayern Munich in the German top-flight, or if he is going to switch clubs in the coming years after gaining enough experience and fame at the Westfalenstadion, also known as the Signal Iduna Park.

Manuel Neuer

  • Team: Bayern Munich

  • Market value: €14M

Even if we could substitute any one of the footballers on the list of best Bundesliga goalkeepers of 2021, we simply could not do the same to Manuel Neuer, who has been at the pinnacle of world football for almost a decade. The 35-year-old German goalkeeper is so good that he has managed to bench Marc-Andre ter Stegen in the Germany national team. Neuer was one of the most promising talents at FC

Schalke

, whom he served for more than five years.

His impressive performance at Schalke attracted

Bayern Munich

’s attention, who in turn arrived at Schalke’s door with a bag full of cash. They splashed €30 million in order to sign the youngster back in 2011. Neuer has since won everything there is to win in football, including two historic sextuples with the Bavarians and the 2014 World Cup with Germany. Bayern Munich’s quality always makes football enthusiasts feel like the Bundesliga is more like a farmers’ league than a proper football tournament.

Yet FC Bayern have proven time and time again that they are simply one of the greatest clubs in the whole world and their quality is undoubtedly too high for the German top-flight. Such a club surely needs a goalkeeper of Neuer’s caliber in order to stay on top for years.

Even though some might claim that Manuel Neuer is well past his prime, the Bayern Munich captain is still delivering world-class performances week-in week-out, which is why he has managed to keep 11 clean sheets in 28 appearances across all competitions this season, while only conceding 28 goals in the process. Neuer’s name will forever echo through the footballing halls of fame and there is no denying the fact that his achievements will be remembered for at least a couple of generations.

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