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Alisson, De Gea, Ramsdale: Premier League goalkeepers ranked by goals prevented in 2021/22

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Who was the best Premier League goalkeeper of the 2021/22 season?

In a year where Jose Sa and Aaron Ramsdale ranked amongst the season’s best signings and Alisson Becker returned to his world-beating best, picking the number one number one is no easy task.

And while you might well have your own opinion on the matter, the closest we can come to making such a subjective question an objective one is by referring to the full set of 2021/22 statistics.

2021/22 Premier League goalkeepers

In fact, to try and answer who the standout Premier League ‘keeper of 2021/22 has been, we’ve turned to the experts over at FBref and their remarkable collection of data on this very topic.

And although there are a thousand ways in which you can judge a goalkeeper’s quality, their job ultimately comes down to, well, preventing goals and therefore the art of shot-stopping.

Yes, we could look at total saves or goals conceded, but the fairest way to judge the league’s goalkeepers regardless of the quality of the team they play for is the so-called ‘goals prevented’ metric.

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The ‘goals prevented’ statistic

This new kid on the block in the world of stats is calculated by comparing the difference between a goalkeeper’s goals conceded and the post-shot expected goals that they faced based on the xG model.

In other words, if a goalkeeper was statistically meant to have conceded 50 goals based on the quality of the shots they faced, but only conceded 48, then the theory goes that they prevented two goals.

The only caveats are that own goals are not included, but penalties are indeed factored in.

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Premier League goalkeepers ranked by goals prevented

It’s not a perfect system and the xG doubters amongst you might be rolling your eyes, but it’s arguably the closest data has ever come to ranking the shot-stopping ability of goalkeepers.

So, without further ado, be sure to check out how all the Premier League ‘keepers to have amassed at least 10 appearances in the 2021/22 season rank by goals prevented down below:

23. Illan Meslier (Leeds United): -7.8

22. Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa): -5.2

=20. Aaron Ramsdale (Arsenal): -4.6

=20. Ben Foster (Watford): -4.6

Watford's Foster clapping.Soccer Football – Premier League – Wolverhampton Wanderers v Watford – Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton, Britain – March 10, 2022 Watford’s Ben Foster applauds fans after the match REUTERS/Tony Obrien EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club /league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

19. Tim Krul (Norwich City): -3.9

18. Vicente Guaita (Crystal Palace): -3.6

=15. Alex McCarthy (Southampton): -2.2

=15. Ederson (Manchester City): -2.2

=15. Daniel Bachmann (Watford): -2.2

Watford's Bachmann in the Premier League.Soccer Football – Premier League – Watford v West Ham United – Vicarage Road, Watford, Britain – December 28, 2021 Watford’s Daniel Bachmann reacts Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club /league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

14. Fraser Forster (Southampton): -1.2

13. Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester City): -0.7

=11. Edouard Mendy (Chelsea): -0.5

=11. Hugo Lloris (Tottenham Hotspur): -0.5

10. Jordan Pickford (Everton): 0.1

Everton's Pickford after a game.Soccer Football – Premier League – Everton v Crystal Palace – Goodison Park, Liverpool, Britain – May 19, 2022 Everton’s Jordan Pickford celebrates avoiding relegation from the Premier League during a walk around the pitch after the match REUTERS/Phil Noble EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club /league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

9. David Raya (Brentford): 0.5

8. Robert Sánchez (Brighton & Hove Albion): 1.2

7. Álvaro Fernández (Brentford): 2.7

6. Łukasz Fabiański (West Ham United): 4.0

=4. Martin Dúbravka (Newcastle United): 4.1

Newcastle's Dubravka overjoyed.Soccer Football – Premier League – Southampton v Newcastle United – St Mary’s Stadium, Southampton, Britain – March 10, 2022 Newcastle United’s Martin Dubravka celebrates their first goal scored by Newcastle United’s Chris Wood Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club /league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

=4. Alisson Becker (Liverpool): 4.1

3. Nick Pope (Burnley): 4.4

2. David de Gea (Manchester United): 6.7

1. Jose Sa (Wolverhampton Wanderers): 9.2

Wolves' Sa celebrating.Soccer Football – Premier League – Wolverhampton Wanderers v Manchester City – Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton, Britain – May 11, 2022 Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Jose Sa celebrates after Leander Dendoncker scores their first goal REUTERS/Peter Powell EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club /league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

An incredible season for Sa

Take a bow, Jose, take a bow.

The pick between the sticks for many fans and pundits in ‘Team of the Season’ exercises, Sa has been an unexpected upgrade on Rui Patricio with Wolves running a tight ship in defence for great swathes of 2021/22.

For the Portuguese shot-stopper to have statistically prevented so many more goals than the chasing pack is truly something to be heralded when you’re so new to Premier League football.

Wolves' Sa celebrates.Soccer Football – Premier League – Wolverhampton Wanderers v Everton – Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton, Britain – November 1, 2021 Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Jose Sa celebrates after the match Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, clu…

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