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My All-Time Best XI - Goalkeeper

June 27, 2017

Just like hundreds around the world, I’m missing my weekly fix of football. Weekends just aren’t the same - I find myself getting drawn into every transfer rumour imaginable and watching MLS football at 2am, but it’s just not the same.

 

Anyway, to cure the summer boredom, I’ve decided to build my Fantasy All-Time Best XI. Being born in 1992, I didn’t have the pleasure of seeing the likes of Pele or Maradona ply their trade, but I think it would be unfair to exclude them – In this XI, if you kicked a ball since the game was invented, you’re in contention. I’ve done my research and watched as many videos as I could to prepare so here it goes, starting with the goalkeeper shortlist…

 

Gianluigi Buffon

 

 

 

Still, in 2017, where Jordan Pickford goes for £30m, Gianluigi Buffon is still the most expensive goalkeeper in world football, commanding a then obscene £32.5 million in 2001. Juventus certainly haven’t regretted paying that amount of money for arguably the greatest goalkeeper of a generation. At the age of 39 he’s still at the very top and seemingly better than ever, fresh off the back of a Champions League final, which incidentally is the one crown that eludes his illustrious career.

 

Major Honours

 

Serie A (8)

Coppa Itallia (4)

UEFA Cup (1)

World Cup (1)

 

Stand-out Achievement

 

Winning the World Cup in 2006 with Italy

 

Best Save

 

V’s Inzaghi (AC Milan) – Champions League Final 2002/03

 

 

Iker Casillas

 

 

 

Being Real Madrid’s number 1 goalkeeper for 15 years is no mean feat, but that’s exactly what Iker Casillas was. After forcing his way in the team in the 99-2000 season, becoming the youngest goalkeeper in Champions League history, Casillas made the Real Madrid, and eventually Spain, No. 1 shirt his own. Still playing regularly with Porto, Casillas’ is one of few to have achieved everything there is to be achieved.

 

Major Honours

 

La Liga (5)

Copa del Rey (2)

Champions League (3)

Club World Cup (1)

World Cup (1)

European Championship (2)

 

Stand-out Achievement

 

Winning EURO 2008, World Cup 2010 and EURO 2012 consecutively with Spain

 

Best Save

 

V’s Perotti (Sevilla) – La Liga 2009/10

 

 

Gordon Banks

 

 

 

At club-level, Banks didn’t have much success bar a couple of League Cups with Leicester and Stoke respectively. Gordon Banks however will not be remembered for his club career, which by all accounts wasn’t bad, his performances for England will. The greatest English goalkeeper of all-time, a World Cup winner in 1966 made what is regarded by many as the greatest save ever in 1970 against Pele and Brazil.

 

Major Honours

 

World Cup (1)

 

Stand-out Achievement

 

Winning the World Cup with England

 

Best Save

 

V’s Pele (Brazil) - 1970 World Cup - Group Stage

 

 

 

Peter Schmeichel

 

 

 

The Great Dane, as a United fan, certainly the best goalkeeper I’ve seen grace the shirt – although David De Gea isn’t too far behind now. The original ‘sweeper keeper’ was an intimidating figure between the sticks and a massive part of United’s 90’s success, the treble season in particular. A career total of 10 goal isn’t bad either!

 

Major Honours

 

Premier League (5)

FA Cup (3)

Champions League (1)

European Championship (1)

 

Stand-out Achievement

 

Winning the Treble in 1999 with Manchester United

 

Best Save

 

V’s Wagner (Rapid Vienna) – Champions League 1996/97 - Group Stage

 

 

 

 

Oliver Kahn

 

 

 

Perhaps the greatest goalkeeper ever in a one-on-one situation. Oliver Kahn won it all with Bayern and single-handedly delivered them the Champions League with a shoot-out victory against Valencia in 2001. After a stellar tournament with Germany at the 2002 World Cup, Kahn and Germany fell just short in what proved to be Kahn’s best chance of reaching the pinnacle of football. Despite being on the losing side, and Ronaldo setting the world alight, Kahn still received the Golden Ball at the 2002 World Cup, which is testament to just how good he was.

 

Major Honours

 

Bundesliga (8)

DFB-Pokal (6)

Champions League (1)

UEFA Cup (1)

European Championship (1)

 

Stand-out Achievement

 

Man of the match performance in the 2001 Champions League final

 

Best Save

 

V’s Pellegrino (Valencia) – Champions League Final 2001 – Shoot-out

 

 

 

Lev Yashin

 

 

 

Lev Yashin, nicknamed ‘The Black Panther’, remains to this day the only goalkeeper to win the Ballon d’Or. Considered by many as the greatest Goalkeeper of All-Time, Yashin was voted as the FIFA Goalkeeper of the Century in 2000 and has been put in the sticks in multiple Dream Teams, including the FIFA World Cup All-Time Team in 1994. On top of that, Yashin saved 151 penalty kicks throughout his career, more than any other goalkeeper in football history.

 

Major Honours

 

Soviet Top League (5)

Soviet Cup (3)

European Championship (1)

 

Stand-out Achievement

 

Winning European Championship with Soviet Union in 1960

 

Best Save

 

V’s Landa (Chile) – 1962 World Cup – Quarter Final

 

 

So there's the nominees and the goalkeeper spot goes to…

 

Iker Casillas

 

It was a tough decision, there are goalkeepers who didn’t even make this shortlist that I wouldn’t argue against being in an All-Time Best XI, but my mind is made up. I’m giving the number 1 shirt to Iker Casillas.

 

The line up so far...

 

 

 

Next up, the right-backs – Keep an eye out for my next post. Who is the goalkeeper in your All-Time Best XI? Tweet me  @zefutbolwriter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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