Under the spotlight: Who are the Premier League’s top stoppers?

As the Premier League season moves rapidly towards the business end, we have turned our attention to a group of players with an unenviable but important role: goalkeepers.

The division’s top shot-stoppers will play a key role as they look to ensure their respective sides stay afloat or secure silverware this season.

We have picked out the best-performing goalkeepers using a host of new stats from Twenty3’s Release R9, which takes our analysis to another level.

Alisson Becker

Alisson Becker has continued to perform at the highest level for Liverpool in 2023-24.

The Brazilian has kept seven clean sheets, helped by the dominant centre-back pairing of Virgil van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate.

This term, Alisson has made 56 saves and conceded just 19 goals from an xGA of 21.2 xG.

He is also trusted in possession. The 31-year-old has received 552 balls and completed 631 passes (the second-most in the league) with a 90.4% accuracy.

Despite a couple of uncharacteristic defensive mix-ups in their 3-1 loss to Arsenal, Liverpool remain in contention for a second league title under Jurgen Klopp. 

That is in no small part thanks to the efforts of their No1.

André Onana

Manchester United’s André Onana has divided opinion after arriving for a sizable fee from Ajax in the summer.

His numbers, though, are largely impressive, despite some questionable performances earlier in the season — particularly in the Champions League.

The 27-year-old is joint-second with league-leading Liverpool shot-stopper Alisson for clean sheets in the Premier League (seven).

No player has prevented more goals in the division than Onana (7.87), impressive given his relative lack of protection by an injury-ridden defence.

He has faced the fifth-most efforts (113) — only Bernd Leno, Thomas Kaminski, James Trafford and Wes Foderingham have seen more action.

Onana arrived with a reputation as a ball-playing goalkeeper and he has demonstrated his ability to launch attacks from the back, with a division-leading four through balls completed.

The Cameroon international, after a shaky start, has quietly been one of the league’s stronger, more under-appreciated performers.

Guglielmo Vicario

Guglielmo Vicario has been a revelation since joining Tottenham.

Ange Postecoglou’s bold high line has often left the Italian exposed. The majority of shots Vicario has faced have been from close range, with 99 attemps inside 0-12 yards.

Still, the Udine native has more than held his own, completing 106 ball recoveries and winning four of his five loose ball duels, preventing opposition forwards from latching onto passes in behind.

Vicario has also proved himself adept at claiming crosses, coming out on top in 18 of his 22 aerial duel attempts — the second-most among keepers in the Premier League..

His shot-stopping has helped keep Spurs within reach of a top-four finish, and he is certainly a player Postecoglou will want to build his defence around in the long term.

Despite coming under plenty of pressure during a 2-1 win over Everton, Vicario made several crucial saves to ensure all three points for Tottenham.

Jordan Pickford

When Everton received a 10-point penalty for breaching profitability and sustainability rules, few doubted Sean Dyche’s ability to resolve the dire situation.

And Jordan Pickford has been central to their fightback. The England No1 leads the Golden Glove race with eight clean sheets to his name.

He has prevented an impressive 4.63 goals this term — fourth-most in the league — with most of his shots faced (106) coming from long-range (18+ yards). 

Pickford is also competent on the ball and has been tasked primarily with playing long balls. As a result, the Toffees’ keeper has assisted three shots and completed four through passes.

No goalkeeper in the division has completed more passes into the final third of the pitch (81).

Pickford will hope he can produce more spectacular saves to breathe new life into Everton’s survival push.

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