Fantastic (very young) goalkeepers and where to find them

Category: Team Analysis

We go to those places with the greatest capacity to develop goalkeepers of great stature and technical potential to find U21 goalkeepers.

Published:31/08/2023

Talent can now be found all over the world, although not all talent from anywhere in the world is ready to make it to the top level. However, this is not quite the same for goalkeepers. Yes, physique is the frontier in attracting emerging talent. Centimetres, strength or agility are often decisive in the search criteria, but in goalkeeping it is even more evident. That is why there are certain markets that are more capable of producing goalkeepers with great potential.

Nordic, Balkan or Slavic countries are more capable of producing goalkeepers over 1’90m with great ease. To get an idea of the accuracy and production capacity of big goalkeepers, we did a quick search for U21 goalkeepers, without filtering level or quality, in the leagues of Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Poland, Czech Republic, Greece, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Russia, Ukraine and Austria. 95% of the U21 goalkeepers found were over 1’90m and 35% of them were over 1’95m. This is an extremely easy variable to find. So we started to filter and watch the most interesting ones on video.

Konstantinos Tzolakis – 2002 – 193cm – Greece – Olympiacos – 1.5M euros market value.

Ends contract in 2024 and is getting more minutes in a team like Olympiacos, with high demands and pressure on the players. Goalkeeper with very good agility, flexibility and reflexes, quick and strong hands to clear and calm to hold and cover in one-on-one situations.

Aleksander Bobek – 2004 – 196cm – Poland – Lodzki Klub Sportowy – 600k market value

One of the most promising players is Aleksander Bobek, a 19-year-old Polish goalkeeper who has been putting in increasingly strong performances. He has real potential for even more difficult saves, tricky stretches and very quick reactions to completely unprepared situations or very close shots. In the face of really tight shots, his positioning and reaction show fantastic talent. In our database, thanks to our Aerial Accuracy metric, which measures the crosses a goalkeeper should claim, Bobek appears as the best in the Polish championship.

Stanislas Agkatsev – 2002 – 189 cm – Russia – FC Krasnodar

Lubomir Belko – 2002 – 189cm – Slovenia – Zilina – 500k market value

Arguably the best young Slovenian goalkeeper at the moment, already an U21 international with the national team, he showed some extraordinary goals saved numbers last season. Potential to leave soon for a bigger league or a big club in stronger leagues near Slovenia.

Filip Sidklev – 2005 – 190cm – Sweden – IF Brommapojkarna – 800k market value

A player we have already recommended on other occasions and to whom we dedicate a text because of his potential, both under the sticks and with his feet. At just 18 years of age, he has shown signs of his potential. With a lot of things still to be polished, he has a great long run and a great agility to stretch despite his enormous height.

Veljko Ilic – 2003 – 195 cm – Serbia – Backa Topola – 1.5M euros market value

Nominated for the best young player of the last Serbian Super League, Ilic has almost everything to find a place in a stronger league sooner rather than later. Big, confident and very patient, he knows how to hold on and always keeps the right distance in one-on-ones so as not to open doors for the striker before setting up the shot. Feels like he has a very good mentality for the elite.

Founded in 2017 as a consultancy, Driblab has driven innovation through data in all aspects of professional football. Thanks to a transversal model, its database collects and models statistics in all directions. From converting matches and videos into bespoke data for training academies to developing cutting-edge technology, helping clubs, federations and representative agencies in talent scouting and transfer markets. Driblab’s smart data is used by clubs all over the world, with success stories such as Dinamo Zagreb, Real Betis and Girondins Bordeaux among others. Here you can find out more about how we work and what we offer.

Autor: Alejandro Arroyo
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