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The 10 Best England Goalkeepers Of All Time, Ranked

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The 10 Best England Goalkeepers Of All Time, Ranked

Who are the best England goalkeepers ever and where does current England number one, Jordan Pickford, rank among them? That's the question we're looking to answer here.

Pickford's good form and penalty heroics during Euro 2020 has prompted something of a reevaluation of his talents, with some claiming he's among the best keepers in the world right now.

We're not sure he's there just yet, though several of his teammates make it into our lists of the best right backs and best left backs in the world. Read on to find out where we rank him among England's number ones.

10) Paul Robinson

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  • 41 appearances
  • 22 goals conceded
  • 24 clean sheets

What happened to Paul Robinson? It seems losing his England place led to his decline as a keeper. On paper, his record is excellent - he almost broke Gordon Banks' record for the most consecutive clean sheets for England - but high-profile mistakes dented his confidence and his form waned

Paul Robinson (Credit: PA)
Paul Robinson (Credit: PA)

9) David James

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  • 53 appearances
  • 46 goals conceded
  • 21 clean sheets

David James' record doesn't scream 'all time great' but he collected 53 caps and served England for a long time. He was a better keeper than his goals against ratio suggests, but his excellent shot stopping was sometimes let down by poor decision making and distribution. Fun fact: he became the oldest player to make his World Cup debut in 2010 at the age 39 years and 321 days old.

David James (Credit: PA)
David James (Credit: PA)

8) Nigel Martyn

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  • 23 appearances
  • 18 goals conceded
  • 12 clean sheets

Martyn was unfortunate to spend most of his career behind one of the finest moustaches in football history, aka David Seaman. But Martyn was a superb keeper and rarely let England down on the occasions he was called upon. He'd have been the no.1 in many eras.

Nigel Martyn (Credit: PA)
Nigel Martyn (Credit: PA)

7) Joe Hart

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  • 75 appearances
  • 48 goals conceded
  • 43 clean sheets

Don't laugh. His career might have taken a massive nosedive after some high-profile errors during Euro 2016 and subsequent World Cup qualifiers, but Joe Hart reached 75 caps with good reason. In his peak he was an outstanding shot-stopper and his pace off the line was often a life-saver. It's just a shame his mistakes are more memorable than his many excellent performances. Currently found bowling left-arm medium pace for Tottenham's reserves.

Joe Hart (Credit: PA)
Joe Hart (Credit: PA)

6) Chris Woods

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  • 43 appearances
  • 25 goals conceded
  • 27 clean sheets

Woods was unlucky that his England career was spent competing with two all-time England greats, Peter Shilton and David Seaman. But, much like Nigel Martyn, Woods was an excellent keeper and his record for England shows as much. He has the best clean sheet percentage of any keeper to play more than a handful of games for England, which is damn impressive. Woods was doubly cursed to play in some truly woeful England teams, including the one that scored just one goal in three games at Euro 92. Woods kept two clean sheets.

Chris Woods (Credit: PA)
Chris Woods (Credit: PA)

5) Jordan Pickford

  • 37 appearances
  • 29 goals conceded
  • 18 clean sheets

Here he is. England's defensive record at Euro 2020 probably flattered Pickford somewhat, but he was reliable when called upon and performed heroics during the Final penalty shootout. Pickford's distribution marks him out among England's stoppers - none have his range or ambition, which is vital in this England team's play. If he continues his current form he could easily see himself higher on this list in future.

Jordan Pickford (Credit: PA)
Jordan Pickford (Credit: PA)

4) Ray Clemence

  • 61 appearances
  • 54 goals conceded
  • 27 clean sheets

His goals conceded ratio doesn't look great, but the England teams he played in were, frankly, crap. He played in teams that failed to qualify for the 1974 and 1978 World Cups and were knocked out of Euro 1980 in the group stages - we have no idea how good we have it now. Clemence, however, was a great keeper for England and Liverpool, and acted as England's goalkeeping coach for more than a decade.

Ray Clemence (Credit: PA)
Ray Clemence (Credit: PA)

3) David Seaman

  • 75 appearances
  • 44 goals conceded
  • 40 clean sheets

Forget about that Ronaldinho blunder, Seaman was a rock for England and one of the best Premier League keepers ever for Arsenal. He's best remembered for his exploits during Euro 96, particularly his penalty saves against Scotland and Spain. In many respects he was the antithesis of current incumbent Pickford - totally calm, unflappable and in command. He played too long for England and suffered for it, but his longevity is a testament to his ability and character.

David Seaman (Credit: PA)
David Seaman (Credit: PA)

2) Peter Shilton

  • 125 appearances
  • 80 goals conceded
  • 66 clean sheets

England's most-capped player, Shilton made his debut in November 1970 against East Germany and his last against Italy in 1990 - that's almost 20 years! He set the record for the most cleans sheets at World Cups (10 in 17 games), a record eventually matched by Fabian Barthez but never surpassed.

Peter Shilton (Credit: PA)
Peter Shilton (Credit: PA)

1) Gordon Banks

  • 73 appearances
  • 57 goals conceded
  • 35 clean sheets

One of the best goalkeepers of all time and a World Cup winner in 1966, Banks will probably forever be considered England's greatest goalkeeper. That save against Pele is a permanent memoriam to his outstanding talents between the sticks. A genuine England legend.

If you enjoyed this, try our list of the best strikers in the world right now.

Gordon Banks (Credit: PA)
Gordon Banks (Credit: PA)

Topics: Joe Hart, Euro 2020, England, Jordan Pickford

Andy Vandervell
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