Football's top five goal-scoring goalkeepers

Over the years football goalkeepers have shown they can score goals, scoring from goal-kicks, while some have converted spot-kicks and free-kicks too.

Published : May 09, 2020 10:29 IST

Rogerio Ceni's (in blue shirt) successfully taken penalty is celebrated by Sao Paulo's players.
Rogerio Ceni's (in blue shirt) successfully taken penalty is celebrated by Sao Paulo's players.

Rogerio Ceni's (in blue shirt) successfully taken penalty is celebrated by Sao Paulo's players.

Keeping clean sheets, adjusting the wall during an opponent's free-kick and making saves are deemed as the duties of a football goalkeeper. The position comes with plenty of scrutiny. They are often not considered for the Ballon d'Or and until a few seasons back they weren't paid the same transfer fee as other outfield players.

However, over the years there have been shot-stoppers who have outscored even some of their team's strikers during a season. These keepers not only know how to guard a goal at one end but they also show how to score one at the other end. Some of them have taken penalties and free-kicks with the precision of a No. 10.

Read: How Liverpool conquered the FIFA Club World Cup

Here's a list of top-scoring custodians in the history of football:

Rogerio Ceni (Brazil)  

Playing career: 1990-2015; Goals: 131

Brazilian Rogerio Ceni has over a hundred club goals in his career. He is a Sao Paulo legend, having spent his entire playing time at the club. He is one of the most decorated goalkeepers in history. He was part of Brazil's 2002 World Cup-winning team, while he has also claimed a Confederations Cup winners' medal.

With Sao Paulo, Ceni's won a Club World Cup, two Copa Libertadores and three Brazil top-division league titles. He holds the record for the most number of free-kicks (62) and penalties (70) taken by a shot-stopper and has bagged a brace in five matches. In all likelihood, there might not be another goalkeeper who can match his accolades.

Jose Luis Chilavert (Paraguay)

Playing career: 1982-2004; Goals: 67

The top-scoring goalkeepers' list is dominated by South Americans and Paraguay's Jose Luis Chilavert is next in line. He has played for several Paraguayan and Argentine clubs in his career, while also plying his trade for Spain's Real Zaragoza and France's Strasbourg.

Paraguayan Jose Luis Chilavert celebrates a goal.

Chilavert owns the record for most international goals (8) scored by a custodian and is one among the very few players of his position to score a hattrick. He is a three-time International Federation of Football History & Statistics (IFFHS) 'World's Best Goalkeeper' award winner. The veteran was also part of the 1998 FIFA World cup Team of the Tournament.

Dimitar Ivankov (Bulgaria)

Playing career: 1996-2012; Goals: 42

Dimitar Ivankov has recently worked as a goalkeeping coach at his childhood club Levski Sofia. The former Bulgaria international enjoyed more success in Turkey than in his own nation. He's won trophies at Kayserispor and Bursaspor, scoring important goals for both teams.

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Ivankov was part of his country's Euro 2004 campaign in Portugal and has made 64 international caps in total. He's also featured in the Champions League and Europa League. He is Europe's top goal-scoring shot-stopper, finding the back of the net 42 times. 

Rene Higuita (Colombia)

Playing career: 1985-2010; Goals: 41

Colombian Rene Higuita is famous for his 'Scorpion Kick' save against England in 1995. He was nicknamed 'El Loco' (The Madman) for his high-risk playing style. He spent most of his club career playing for Atletico Nacional in Colombia. He has also represented Spanish outfit Real Valladolid.

Higuita has played several FIFA World Cup and Copa America tournaments. His unorthodox style resulted in Colombia's exit from the 1990 WC. He tried to feint Cameroon striker Roger Milla, who dispossessed him and scored the goal which sent Colombia out of the competition. However, Higuita stuck to his style and played a part in 41 goals for club and country.

Johnny Vegas Fernandez (Peru)

Playing career: 1997-2017; Goals: 39

Johnny Vegas Fernandez has spent his entire club footballing life in Peru. Post-retirement, the goalkeeper even managed Peruvian side Union Comercio's Youth Team for a year. He scored most of his goals for the first-ever senior team he represented - Sports Boys Association.

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When it comes to the international scene, Fernandez has only three international caps to his name. However, he's featured as an unused sub in a few other Copa America and World Cup qualification campaigns. He has bagged 30 goals through penalties, while also managing nine outfield strikes.

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