Manchester United Top 10 Goalkeepers Of All Time.
Manchester United have one of the world’s best goalkeepers in the shape of David de Gea, but it’s certainly not always been that way for them in the Premier League.
Beyond the reliability of Peter Schmeichel, Edwin Van der Sar and De Gea, they’ve not always had a safe pair of hands between the sticks, while they’ve had a number of second and third-choice options don the gloves over the years.
Here, we rank top 10 goalkeepers to make a Premier League appearance for the club. No points for guessing who’s bottom…
10. Mark Bosnich
Manchester United first signed the Australian at the end of the 1980s but let him go as Schmeichel was brought in.
He spent seven years at Aston Villa, establishing himself as a steady pair of hands, and was brought back to replace Schmeichel in 1999.
He won the title as the No.1 in 99-00 but fell down to third place in the pecking order when Fabien Barthez was brought in, failing to make an appearance as they retained it the following season. Ferguson later called him “a terrible professional”. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
9. Tomasz Kuszczak
Making 26 appearances in six years at the club, Kuszczak’s time at Old Trafford coincided with great success as he deputised for Edwin van der Sar.
The Pole clearly wasn’t good enough to be first choice, however, and United often suffered from a lack of understanding between him and the back four, notably as he dawdled to allow Jermaine Beckford to score past him for Leeds United's FA Cup win in 2010.
He was trusted between the posts for their League Cup win that season, though. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
8. Ben Foster
Signed in 2005 but loaned out to Watford for two years, Foster was eventually given some limited opportunities by United after helping the Hornets to promotion in 2006 and looking solid in the Premier League the following year.
He’s established himself as a steady Premier League presence elsewhere but made just 12 league appearances in three years at Old Trafford. He did play a role in the 2009 League Cup win, though. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
7. Roy Carroll
The Northern Ireland international will always be remembered for his blunder against Tottenham when he flapped at Pedro Mendes’ cross and allowed the ball to cross over the line.
Fortunately the referee let him off, but had it been correctly allowed it would have gone down in history, filed next to Taibi’s howler.
Overall, though, he had a good record. Lapses aside, he kept a clean sheet in half of his 46 league appearances. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
6. Tim Howard
The American showed how reliable and comfortable he was with Premier League football as he made over 350 league appearances spanning a decade at Everton.
At United, his courage and personality had some considering him Peter Schmeichel’s true successor, but it wasn’t to be. And his time in Manchester coincided with a fallow period for the club – they fell 15 points behind Arsenal’s Invincibles in his only full season and then fell short of Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
5. Raimond van Der Gouw
Arriving in 1996 from Vitesse Arnheim, the 6’3” Dutchman has a case of being Manchester United’s best back-up of the Premier League era, proving reliable whenever Schmeichel was sidelined.
He eventually got more opportunities after the Dane left in 1999, competing with Bosnich for the starting position. He made 14 appearances in the 1999-2000 season and 10 in 2000-01 as the club won back-to-back league titles. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
4. Fabien Barthez
The World Cup winner with France was seen as a potential true successor to Schmeichel but never fully convinced.
He’s remembered for his erratic behaviour and individual errors as much as anything else, but he was still a very good keeper and certainly enjoyed success at Old Trafford. Two league titles in three full years as No.1 is a decent enough return. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
3. David de Gea
In terms of individual brilliance, De Gea is arguably the best, but he’s a victim of circumstance which means he can’t rank any higher on this list.
The Spaniard put a rocky start behind him to excel in the 2013 title win, Alex Ferguson’s last. And he has since completed a set of domestic trophies with an FA Cup under Louis van Gaal and League Cup under Jose Mourinho.
But Manchester United are too big a club to be satisfied with just the smaller trophies. The fact remains in the six seasons since Ferguson retired, they haven’t challenged for a Premier League title and made just one Champions League quarter-final – under David Moyes.
That’s not good enough for a goalkeeper whose remarkable reflex saves and shot-stopping ability have put him in the conversation for the best in the world.
Player of the year in three of the last five seasons, it could have been even worse without him. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
2. Edwin van der Sar
A career bookended with wonderful highs after he established himself as a sweeper for Louis Van Gaal's all conquering Ajax in the early 90's.
At 42.17%, he actually has the best games to clean sheets ratio of any Manchester United goalkeeper to make over 50 Premier League appearances, and third overall behind Petr Cech and Pepe Reina.
Considering that ratio includes four mid-table seasons at Fulham, it underlines how imperious United were at the back in his years there.
A key part of arguably the club’s best ever Premier League defensive unit, Van der Sar was as lucky to play behind peak Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic as they were to play ahead of him.
They won four league titles and reached three Champions League finals in his time at the club, winning the first thanks to Van der Sar’s penalty save from Nicolas Anelka.
Sadly he couldn’t bow out like Schmeichel with another one, as they were outclassed by Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona for a second time in 2011. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
1. Peter Schmeichel
Alongside the captaincy of Roy Keane, the genius of Eric Cantona and the once in a generation ‘Class Of 92’, Schmeichel was one of the defining names that reestablished Manchester United as a genuine superclub.
After 26 years without a league title, Schmeichel was a key figure under Alex Ferguson as they ended that wait in 1993 and established their status as the biggest and most successful club of the Premier League era, setting the template for everything else that followed.
He won five league titles in eight years at the club and bowed out perfectly with his last appearance at the Camp Nou, lifting the Champions League trophy to complete their historic treble.
The Dane’s aggressive, front-foot style was perfect just as the backpass rule was introduced at the advent of the Premier League. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.