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6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers 6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers

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6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers

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Most times, when push comes to shove in matches and it’s that time the game must be decided by a penalty shootout, or when a team needs to salvage a game, the goalkeeper is often banked upon to come up big in these situations. This is why the most significant role in a football team is arguably the goalkeeping role.

And for some goalkeepers, saving penalties could be their most stressful job but there exists a certain breed of goalkeepers who are considered specialists when it comes to saving penalties.

These goalkeepers are geniuses when it comes to deploying different techniques (mind games inclusive) to frustrate the morale of the player who wants to take the penalty.

Over the years, there have been a plethora number of Goalkeepers who made a mark on their respective careers due to their fantabulous ability to save spot-kicks at decisive and critical moments.

However, many football fans do not know that this special breed of goalkeepers, takes time to research, practice, and study football players with the hope of stopping their penalties whenever the opportunity arises.

When you think about Penalty-Saving goalkeepers, which of them comes to mind? Cheapgoals will look at goalkeepers who have had the best records in terms of shutting out penalties.

  • Willy Caballero – Argentina And Chelsea

6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers

Having been a starter for Elche and Malaga at a very young age, Caballero has been a second choice for a host of other clubs he has played for. However, his Goalkeeping prowess is good on the average.

The Argentine boasts of fine saved penalty statistics, Caballero could be trusted with saving penalties both in matches or shootout.

Recall that famous incident that happened in a Carabao Cup final between Chelsea and Manchester City. The match was on the verge of ending all square when Chelsea then manager, (Antonio Conte) beckoned on the goalkeeper on the pitch (Kepa Arrizabalaga) to make way for Caballero which he refused.

Conte so much trusted in the Argentine to help deal with City’s spot-kick. Unfortunately, Kepa’s recalcitrance cost Chelsea the shootout against City.

According to transfermarkt.com, Willy Caballero has saved 11 out of 27 penalties (41%) in his career. (Shootouts not included)

READ ALSO: 10 Of The Worst Goalkeepers Since 2010-20

  • Diego Alves – Brazil And Flamengo

6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers

Diego Alves is widely regarded as a penalty-saving specialist, he once stated that a penalty is “a psychological battle between the goalkeeper and the taker” and as such, Alves instills fear in the mind of every penalty taker’s minds and the same can be said when the rest of the footballers hear his name too.

He’s one goalkeeper that opponents do not jubilate when a penalty is awarded against his team (either Valencia or Almeria) unless the penalty is taken and scored. In fact, scoring penalties against Alves is an unusual feat.

The Brazilian left Valencia in 2017 with 23 spot-kicks saved and have saved 3 more at Flamingos in Brazil. He’s made 26 saves from 65 penalties as a goalkeeper overall – reliable Alves.

  • Samir Handanović – Slovenia and Internazionale Milano

6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers

For any goalkeeper, having a threat imposing physique at the goalpost and the ability to have an idea of where the ball would be placed are some of the characteristics that intimidate any penalty-taker even before the penalty is taken.

Samir Handanović possesses the aforementioned characteristics. Standing at 6’5 feet tall, the Slovenian has become popular in Italy and Europe at large due to his razor-sharp reflexes and an uncanny ability to read his opponent’s body language, which has tremendously improved his penalty saving ability.

The former Lazio and Udinese shot-stopper has a unique record of saving six consecutive penalties in all competitions between 2013 and 2015. Astonishing!

And his ability to stay on his feet and rush off his line are his strengths which have helped him achieve 41 penalty saves out of 112 he’s faced all through his career.

  • Gianluigi Buffon – Italy And Juventus

6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers

Widely considered by players, pundits, and managers as one of the greatest goalkeepers of all time, and by some in the sport as the greatest ever. Gianluigi Buffon has been involved in massive penalty situations all through his career.

The Italian veteran goalkeeper has gotten a whole lot of praise for his consistency, athleticism, and his outstanding shot-stopping ability which has made him be an effective penalty stopper.

Buffon boasts of an amazing penalty-saving record; With 33 saves from 109 spot-kicks, he has stopped the fourth-highest number of penalties in Serie A history [650].

However, his biggest penalty save would probably be from Adrian Mutu in Euro 2008, where he was able to stop a penalty to keep Italy in the tournament and deny Romania a historic win.

READ ALSO: Top 10 Goalkeepers With The Most Goal In Football History

  • Claudio Bravo – Chile And Real Betis

6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers

Even if the Chilean has passed his prime, it’s pertinent to appreciate his goalkeeping abilities. Bravo during his prime was labeled as a playmaking goalkeeper due to his ability to play the ball out from the back or launch attacks from goal-kicks.

However, his authoritative presence in goal when he’s faced with penalties is a beauty to watch. On numerous occasions, the former Barcelona and Manchester City goalkeeper has emerged as a hero of a penalty shootout for clubs he played for and country.

Out of 31 spot-kicks faced, Bravo was able to stop 10 from entering his goalpost.

  • Ederson Moraes – Brazil And Manchester City

6 Of The Best Penalty-Saving Goalkeeepers

The 27-year-old is agile, commanding, and with an imposing physique at the goalpost; with the attributes mentioned, Ederson has improved immensely and he’s today not just a penalty-saving goalkeeper, but one of the most complete goalkeepers in the world as of now.

He developed a reputation for saving penalties during his time at Benfica. However, he is mostly regarded for his outstanding distribution and skill with the ball at his feet.

 

 

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3 Premier League Flops Who Made It Big Elsewhere

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3 Premier League Flops Who Made It Big Elsewhere

The English Premier League has welcomed some of the best players in the history of football. Players from different continents have made a huge impact on the league with impressive performances. There are others who failed to impress and can be termed as flops.

The League is quite unique from other European leagues. It is more competitive, fierce, physically challenging in nature. Needless to say, a player who isn’t mentally and physically geared up for this will stumble under the pressure.

Established stars can fall by the wayside with their former successes and triumphs becoming nothing more than a footnote in the EPL. Impressively, some of these players put in impressive performances when they moved to other leagues.

3 Premier League Flops Who Made It Big In Other Leagues

  • Paulinho

3 Premier League Flops Who Made It Big Elsewhere

Following the impending sale of Gareth Bale to Real Madrid, Tottenham bought several players, one of the players they bought was Paulinho.

Paulinho was signed from Corinthians in Brazil where he helped them win the Copa Libertadores, Brasileirao, and the FIFA Club World Cup.

They defeated Chelsea in the latter to lift the trophy. Importantly, he had just won the FIFA Confederations Cup with Brazil and was voted as the third-best player at the tournament.

He joined Tottenham as the club’s record signing in 2013, so a lot was expected of him. However, his performance was not as impressive as the club had envisaged. He was later sold to Guangzhou Evergrande in China at a loss.

The Brazilian’s transfer to the Chinese league resulted in a change of fortunes, as helped the club claim the Chinese league and the AFC Champions League title in his first season.

In the second, he was voted into the Chinese League team of the year in recognition of his performance. Also, he won the league, FA Cup, and Super Cup.

Although critics downplayed his performance, citing the standard of the Chinese league compared to the English league, Paulinho impressed in Spain too following a €40 million move to Barcelona.

Paulinho helped the club claim the league and the Copa del Rey trophy. His performance in his only season with Barcelona impressed Ronaldinho who said: “He really stood out.”

  • Iago Aspas

3 Premier League Flops Who Made It Big Elsewhere

Most Premier League fan remembers Aspas only as a Liverpool flop with the number 9 jersey. Aspas moved from boyhood club Celta Vigo to Liverpool for a deal estimated to be around £7.7 m, with Liverpool hoping to have unearthed a gem. However, that gem turns dregs, failing to score in any of his 14 league appearances.

After just one season, Liverpool decided that they have seen enough so they sent him on a season-long loan to Sevilla with an obligation to buy. In his season-long loan at the club, he was the joint top scorer in the Copa del Rey alongside Neymar with 7 goals and won the UEFA Europa League.

At the end of his season-long loan at Sevilla, the club signed him from Liverpool but sold him to Celta Vigo in the same transfer window. In every of his first 5 seasons at Celta Vigo, he scored in double digits.

In fact, in three of the 5 seasons, he won the Zarra Trophy awarded to the Spanish player with the most league goals in a season. As of December 2020, Aspas had won La Liga player of the month four times.

READ ALSO: 10 Premier League Players With Most Own Goals

  • Diego Forlan

3 Premier League Flops Who Made It Big Elsewhere

Perhaps, the most notable and interesting English Premier League flop who became a star in another League. He was not just impressive in another league; he was extraordinary with his National team Uruguay.

Sir Alex Ferguson signed Forlan in 2001 following the attacker’s impressive form at Independiente in Argentina. In his first season in England, Forlan made 18 appearances but failed to score a single goal. The two seasons after were not impressive either, hence his transfer to Villarreal.

Impressively, Forlan scored 25 league goals in his first season with Villarreal and won the league’s top scorers award (2004/05). Also, he was awarded the European Golden Shoe award alongside Thierry Henry the same year. He left the club two seasons later for Atletico with 59 goals scored in 128 matches.

In his second season with Atletico Madrid (2008/09), Forlan beat Samuel Eto’o to the Spanish league’s top scorer’s award. He scored 32 league goals in 33 league appearances that season which earned him the Pichichi trophy. Again, he won the European Golden Shoe but this time it was not shared with anyone.

The next season (2009/10), Forlan played a key role as Atletico won the Europa League. He scored six times in the tournament, including two in the 2-1 win over Fulham in the final. He was voted as the man of the match in the final.

With his national team, he was just as impressive; he scored the most goals at the 2010 FIFA World Cup alongside Thomas Muller, Wesley Sneijder, and David Villa.

Furthermore, he was voted into the FIFA World Cup dream team and won the Golden Ball and goal of the tournament title. By the time he retired, he was Uruguay’s highest goal scorer in history, a record which has since been broken by Luis Suarez.

Forlan eventually became so good that some Football fans think he is the caliber of player that could have won the Ballon d’Or.

 

Conclusion

There are several reasons why players struggle when they change clubs, especially to other countries. Culture, language, teammates, family are some factors that can affect their performances.

These 3 cases show that a player may fail to perform in one league but go on to become a star in another league.

 

 

 

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Top 15 Highest Paid Players In Ligue 1

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Top 15 Highest Paid Players In Ligue 1

Ligue 1 no doubt harbors quite a number of talented players, as such it’s quite understandable for those considered to be world-class players among them to cash out hugely on what they earn at the end of the month.

As of late, the players’ salaries have given indications of solid development, on account of the tremendous income pouring into the game. The fierce rivalry between the country’s top football clubs has brought the nature of the competition higher than ever. The league has more than its own fair share of highly paid players.

Here is a rundown of the top 15 highest-paid players in the Ligue 1

  • Neymar Jr – (Paris Saint Germain, – €3.06 Per Month )

Top 15 Highest Paid Players In Ligue 1

Behind Ronaldo and Messi, the Brazilian forward is regarded as the third-best player in world football since moving from Santos to Barcelona in 2013 for a deal reported worth €86.2million.

After apparently growing and widening his status as a footballer with his achievement on and off the pitch, it was evident that the former Puskas Award winner would go on to attract top elite clubs.

With the Parisian club brimming with a lot of cash to flex muscles with high spending clubs, it was just a matter of time before Neymar would join them. Fast forward to 2017, the Selecao captain signed for PSG for a world record transfer fee worth €222million, and since then he’s been an important figure of both the club and their project.

Amidst transfer rumors of him returning to his old home Barcelona, plus the fact that the Parisian are also ready to offer him a new deal that would tie him down with the French side for at least another three seasons.

  • Kylian Mbappe – (Paris Saint Germain, € 1.91m Per Month)

Top 15 Highest Paid Players In Ligue 1

As a World Cup winner and one of the best prospects in world football, it’s quite understandable for Mbappe to be among the highest-paid players in Ligue 1 and Paris Saint Germain. The 2018 World Cup winner burst into the scene as a young player for Monaco, making his professional debut in 2015 at the age of 15.

The Frenchman signed for the Parisian club in 2017 on loan, which was later made permanent in 2018. He has shown to be a great prospect for both the club and their project in dominating the Ligue 1 and also flex muscles with the top clubs in Europe.

His permanent transfer to Paris Saint Germain is reported to be worth €180million, making him both the second most expensive player and most expensive teenager. Since joining the Ligue 1 Champions permanently, the 22-year-old has scored over 120 goals for the Parisian club.

However, amidst the rumor of Real Madrid prepping up to break the bank in their quest to bring him down to the Bernabeu, the World Cup winner is still actively the second biggest earner in the league and of course Paris Saint Germain.

READ ALSO: Top 10 Highest Paid Premier League Players As Of 2020/21

  • Correa Marquinhos & Marco Verratti – (Paris Saint Germain, €1.2m Per Month)

Top 15 Highest Paid Players In Ligue 1

Since the departure of top players such as Edinson Cavani, Zlatan, and recently Thiago Silva, Marquinhos’s status has risen from being a mere squad player in the dressing room into a leader, captain, and one of the best gladiator of the club.

As a 19-year-old teenager, the Brazilian was signed in 2013 on a five-year deal by Paris Saint Germain from AS Roma for a fee of around €31.4million. And as reported by BBC Sport, the deal was said to be the highest transfer fee for a teenager then, while Sky also reports it to be the then fifth highest transfer.

The current form of the Brazilian makes him rank as one of Europe’s most valuable players, most especially as a player who is currently plying his trade with the best team in France.

According to the transfer market rating, Marquinhos market value currently stands at €70million, as such with his years of experience and playing over 313 matches for the Parisian, it’s no surprise that the club captain takes home €1.2m per month tied with the Italian on the same amount.

Veratti

As for the Italian, he’s also been a very instrumental player for the team since joining the club nine years ago. There have always been rumors concerning his future, either joining Barcelona or go back to Italy, but as it stands his current contract with Paris Saint Germain would expire in 2024.

  • Angel Di Maria – (Paris Saint Germain, €1.1m Per Month)

Top 15 Highest Paid Players In Ligue 1

Since joining the Parisian for €63million after a disappointing stint with Manchester United in 2015, the Argentine winger has continued to prove to the world that he’s still one of the best players in football since leaving Real Madrid.

Di Maria isn’t just rank among the highest earner for doing nothing, he earns his pay through his brilliant performances over the years since joining them, accumulating a total of 251 appearances scoring over 88 goals and 104 assists.

The former Real Madrid winger may not stay in the Ligue 1 with Paris Saint Germain for three years or more, as he’s already moving close to the end of his career. However, with his deal still running that makes him the fourth-highest earner in the league.

  • Keylor Navas – (Paris Saint Germain, €1m Per Month)

Top 15 Highest Paid Players In Ligue 1

When Navas joined Madrid from Levante in the summer of 2014, no one ever thought he’s going to achieve quite a number of success with Los Blancos based on where he was coming from and his antecedent as a goalkeeper.

After a successful stint with Los Merengues, the imminent arrival of Thibaut Courtois means the Costa Rican goalkeeper days at Real Madrid are numbered.

With his achievement at Real Madrid, it was evident that the Costa Rican won’t find it hard to get good European suitor to come by, as such Paris Saint Germain came calling for his services in 2019 having been told he won’t be Real Madrid number one going forward into the new season.

Following Navas’s move to the French capital, it means his salary would be on the high side based on his achievement and reputation as a Champions League winner with arguably the biggest club in Europe.

As a Paris Saint Germain player, he earns €1m per month, making the Costa Rican one of the highest-paid players in Ligue 1

READ ALSO: 10 Richest Club Owners In World Football

  • Mauro Icardi – (Paris Saint Germain, €800,000 Per Month)

Top 15 Highest Paid Players In Ligue 1

The imminent departure of El Matador when Icardi joined Paris Saint Germain on loan means the responsibility of goalscoring would be on the shoulder of the Argentine. The former Inter Milan forward made his loan permanent with the PSG following a strong start in Paris.

The Argentine and controversy certainly go hand in hand based on his antecedent with his previous clubs. Everywhere he goes he has always shown he could lead the line perfectly, and since he joined the Parisian permanently no report of controversy has been recorded concerning the former Nerazzurri captain.

Icardi may not be the poster boy of PSG just like his days at Inter, that doesn’t make him less of a player in the dressing room among other star players like Neymar and Mbappe who are no doubt the face of the club.

  • Leandro Paredes – (Paris Saint Germain, €750,000 Per Month)
    Juan Bernat – (Paris Saint Germain, €700,000 Per Month)
    Presnel Kimpembe – (Paris Saint Germain, €670,000 Per Month)
    Ander Herrera – (Paris Saint Germain, €650,000 Per Month)
    Wissam Ben Yedder – (Monaco, €650,000 Per Month)
    Cesc Fabregas – (Monaco, €600,000 Per Month)
    Julian Draxler – (Paris Saint Germain, €600,000 Per Month)
    Idrissa Guaye – (Paris Saint Germain, €500,000 Per Month)

 

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