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Ranked: The Top 5 Greatest Goalkeepers Of The 21st Century

Over the past two decades, the art of goalkeeping has seen a tremendous evolution in the game of football. With the advent of technology, the goalkeepers' role has become more complex, as they are expected not only to stop goals but also to initiate counter-attacks with precision passing and distribution. In this article, we will take a look at the top five greatest goalkeepers of the 21st century, taking into account their achievements, consistency, and impact on the game.

5. Edwin van der Sar 

Edwin van der Sar was a stalwart for both Ajax and Manchester United. The Dutchman won the UEFA Champions League with Ajax in 1995 and repeated the feat with Manchester United in 2008. Van der Sar was known for his calmness and composure on the ball, as well as his ability to pull off spectacular saves. The 50-year-old retired in 2011 after a career that saw him win four Premier League titles, two League Cups, and numerous individual awards.

4. Petr Cech 

Petr Cech was a dominant figure in English football during his time at Chelsea. The Czech international was part of the Chelsea team that won the Premier League four times, the FA Cup four times, and the Champions League in 2012. Cech was known for his shot-stopping abilities and his commanding presence in the penalty area. The 39-year-old also holds the record for the most clean sheets in Premier League history, with 202 clean sheets in 443 appearances.

3. Manuel Neuer 

Manuel Neuer is widely regarded as the best goalkeeper in the world today. The German international has redefined the role of a goalkeeper, with his sweeping and distribution skills. Neuer has won every major domestic and international trophy with Bayern Munich, including the Champions League in 2013 and 2020. The 36-year-old has also been a mainstay for the German national team, having won the 2014 World Cup. Neuer has been named the UEFA Goalkeeper of the Year four times and has been included in the FIFA FIFPro World XI on six occasions.

2. Iker Casillas 

Iker Casillas was a rock-solid presence for both Real Madrid and the Spanish national team. The Spaniard was a crucial member of the Real Madrid team that won three successive Champions League titles between 2016 and 2018. Casillas also led Spain to back-to-back European Championships in 2008 and 2012, as well as the 2010 World Cup. The 40-year-old retired in 2020 after a glittering career that saw him win five La Liga titles, two Copa del Rey trophies, and numerous individual awards.

1. Gianluigi Buffon 

Gianluigi Buffon, also known as Gigi, is arguably the greatest goalkeeper of the 21st century. The Italian shot-stopper has been a mainstay for both club and country, having won numerous domestic and international titles. Buffon's most significant achievement came in 2006 when he led Italy to World Cup glory, conceding only two goals in the entire tournament. The 43-year-old has never won the UEFA Champions League, but won nine Serie A titles, and numerous individual awards, including the UEFA Goalkeeper of the Year on three occasions.

Content created and supplied by: Metizen (via Opera News )

Czech Edwin van der Sar Premier UEFA Champions League Van der Sar


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