Goalies are regularly underrated in any sport. At least the World Cup tries to give them the love they deserve with the Golden Glove award, a trophy that is handed out to the top keeper at the tournament.
While we can’t get odds for the award from our sportsbooks right now, we’ll go over four goalies who should be considered for the award, and why you should back them when the market opens up again.
New to soccer betting? Find out where to bet on the 2022 World Cup with our best soccer betting sites page. Also, along with the predictions below, you can check out our World Cup computer picks page. Lastly, we have you covered as well with the odds to win the 2022 World Cup.
2022 World Cup Golden Glove
Alisson Becker - Brazil
Later in this piece, you’ll see a breakdown of the last five Golden Glove winners. What they all seem to have in common is two things: they have gone deep into the tournament and they have put up a lot of clean sheets.
Now I’ll admit none of those are specifically goalie stats. But when it comes to any award, look at the past to understand the future.
Alisson sits tied for the lead in clean sheets in the tournament with two, and he plays for Brazil, a side that has been favored to win the World Cup for years now. The Brazilians are on a path to fulfill those expectations and if they do, Alisson could pick up the award.
Brazil’s odds to win the 2022 World Cup are at +250. A winning bet returns a $250 profit.
Andries Noppert - Netherlands
He has actually made a save. No, that’s not a dig at Noppert. It’s a dig at Alisson, the Brazilian keeper who hasn’t even seen a shot on target and has yet to have to make a save. Noppert, on the other hand, has stopped 10 of the 11 shots he’s faced for a .909 save percentage. That’s the third-highest save percentage in the tournament, by the way.
Noppert has the same number of clean sheets as Alisson, and the Dutch are also expected to push far in the tournament. Certainly not as far as Brazil, but with odds at +1600, they can’t be ignored.
If the Dutch can make it to the semifinals, Noppert has the conventional stats to put a claim on the top goalie award. Undoubtedly, if the Dutch go that far, his underlying numbers will show he probably should win the award.
Wojciech Szczesny - Poland
Here’s one reason why the Polish keeper has a claim for the award:
He didn’t just stop a penalty shot, he stopped a penalty shot from none other than Lionel Messi. And that wasn’t his only penalty kick save of the tournament. The former Arsenal keeper also stopped Saudi Arabia’s Salem Al-Dawsari in Poland’s second game of the group stage.
But it’s not only stopping pens that has Szczesny on my shortlist.
He holds a .909 SV% (fifth-best), two clean sheets and an outstanding +1.20 post-shot expected goals minus goals allowed per 90 (PSxG-/90). That last one is simply how many goals Szczesny has stopped above expected. It’s the highest number in the tournament and nearly doubles the next-best keeper.
Poland probably doesn’t go much further than the Round of 16, but that honestly shouldn’t matter too much. He’s been outstanding so far.
Matt Turner - USA
Just like Poland, the U.S. isn’t expected to go too deep into the tournament. But what we really care about, for this piece, is the quality of their keeper. Because Matt Turner has been excellent.
He’s stopped all five shots he’s faced in the tournament so far for a perfect save percentage. The only goal he’s conceded came on a Gareth Bale penalty kick. He’s got two clean sheets. He holds a respectable +0.24 PSxG-/90. And he’s absolutely clutch at the back as a sweeper-keeper by making 1.67 defensive actions outside of the penalty box per 90.
Again, the U.S. isn’t expected to go far. But when the odds come out, I wouldn’t think twice to put money on Matt Turner. His odds will be long but the possible payout could be massive.
Golden Glove/Lev Yashin Award Last 5 Winners
The Lev Yashin Award was renamed the Golden Glove in 2010. Of the five winners listed here, three of them won the World Cup that particular year. That’s Neuer (Germany - 2014), Casillas (Spain - 2010) and Buffon (Italy - 2006).
Courtois’ 2018 Belgium side finished third while Oliver Kahn’s 2002 German side was the runner-up to Brazil. Clearly, going deep helps a goalie’s profile.