The core of goalkeeping is good
positioning – giving yourself the best possibility of stopping a shot or
intercepting a cross. And positioning is, ion the end, a simple matter of
geometry. Each of the elements of good positioning ties the goalkeeper to
the ball and to the goal in the most efficient way possible.
Goalkeepers should be constantly
pushing to come out further from the goal. Occasionally, a ball will go over
your head and into the net, but you will save far more shots that would
otherwise find their way into the corner of the net.
Striker vs. goalie - 1
In the figure above, the striker A1
has two good choices, with the goalie (G) back on the goal line and in the
middle of the goal.
The near post has not been closed
down, but the far post is open too.
Striker vs goalie 2
In the second figure,
things a re a bit better but not much. The goalie has moved to cover the
near post, but that still leaves a big hole at the far post that the goalie
simply cannot reach
In the third figure,
the goalie has come out to narrow the angle. Now the striker has almost no
view of the goal. A tiny sliver of daylight exists at the far post, but that
will be hard to hit.
The goalie continues to cover the
near post 100% - no daylight there.
So now – in contrast to the
previous figures – the striker must go through the goalie, not
simply find a spot out of his reach.
Obviously, if the goalie comes all
the way out to the striker, he becomes vulnerable to a juke, a chip, or
simply being so close he cannot stop even a soft shot.
So once again, there is a balance
of risk and reward – the goalie must come out far enough to
effectively narrow the angle, but like a defender, should not jump in and
In fact, the ideal spot is pretty
much exactly defined in Fig. 62-3. You want to be as far away from the
striker as possible to have a better chance of reacting to shot, but you
have to be close enough that the striker has no good angle to shoot past
far enough out that the open
angle for the striker has narrowed to almost nothing
no further (unless the striker
has lost control of the ball)
and moving your feet
It’s easy to look like a great
goalie as you make beautiful swan dives to pick the ball out of the air.
But if you are a great
goalie, probably you could just shuffle your feet quickly and move over to
grab the ball.
You need to set yourself up so you
can move quickly and efficiently. That involves both initial positioning and
how you move:
Knees always slightly bent, so
you have some spring in your legs to move fast
On your toes, heel off the ground
Quick short steps in any direction.
As goalie, you don’t have time to developing a nice long loping stride.
You need to get there quick! That means explosive acceleration, which
means short steps:
your feet should never cross (not efficient). Instead, from a standing
start, bring one foot to the other, then move the other out. This
crablike shuffle is efficient and allows you to stay balance and ready
for a shot.
When facing a striker one on one,
you need to off your goal line to narrow the angle. You also need to keep
yourself as “big” as possible.
don’t go to ground
early – attacker can easily chip over or dribble around you
stay low – knees
hand down, arms
pointed at 45 degrees (that is, just out to the side but not horizontal)
stay focused on the
ball – wait for mistake then pounce
The point is to make it as hard as
possible for the striker in a situation in which he has all the advantages.