Top 10 Unbelievable Saves by Goalkeepers in World Cup History
In the history of the World Cup, there have been many goalkeepers who played brilliantly and saved the home team's goals.
Top 10 Best Saves at World Cup of All Time
1.Gordon Banks, England vs Brazil 1970
In the group stage of the 1970 World Cup, England faced Brazil with a very strong squad with Pele being the brightest star. However, England also has a solid fulcrum in the defense is Gordon Banks, one of the best goalkeepers of all time.
Brazil pressed the field and Jairzinho sloped the ball on the right and then swung it in for Pele to bounce high and head into the right corner of the England goal. Banks was standing in the middle of the goal at that time, but like a flash of lightning, the man quickly punched the ball and bounced off. The ball almost rolled over the line but Banks' fingers saved it in time.
|Best Saves by Goalkeepers in World Cup History: Gordon Banks' unbelievable punch|
This ball was voted as "the most spectacular save in history" or "the save of the century". Pele himself later admitted: "I really hated the England goalkeeper at the time, because I didn't understand why Banks was able to successfully save my header. But in my heart, I really did. I have a lot of respect for Banks. I've never seen such a classy save."
2.Gianluigi Buffon, Italy vs. France 2006
|10 Best Saves in World Cup History: Goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon saves Zinedine Zidane's header during the 2006 World Cup final.|
♦ Top 10 Best Goals in World Cup History
In the 2006 World Cup final, Italian goalie Gianluigi Buffon made a fantastic right hand save on a zinger from a Zidane header. The goals would’ve sealed the victory for France; instead, it built up Zidane’s frustration and led to the subsequent headbutt. Italy won the World Cup trophy on penalty kicks.
3.Iker Casillas, Spain vs Netherlands 2010
In a save that haunts Arjen Robben’s chances at a World Cup trophy to this day, Iker Casillas made a kick save in a one on one chance against the Dutch striker. Spain won the World Cup with an Iniesta goal in extra time.
Spain won the tournament – their first world title – with a 1-0 victory over the Netherlands thanks to a late Andres Iniesta strike.
4.Oliver Kahn, Germany vs USA 2002
From the man who brought terror on the pitch, Oliver Kahn made a bunch of spectacular saves in a 1-0 over the USA in the World Cup quarterfinals. But the most incredible block came off a well-placed Landon Donovan shot that deflected off the fingers of an overstretched Kahn.
The 2002 World Cup was a pretty successful tournament with goalkeeper Oliver Kahn. He made a big contribution to bring his team to the Finals. In addition to the save above, Kahn also made an excellent save, denying many goals from the most famous strikers in the world.
5.Noel Valladares, Honduras vs Chile 2010
In a group stage game between Honduras and Chile in World Cup 2010, Noel Valladares made a diving save off a wide-open Waldo Ponce header just outside the goal line in the 65th minute. Unfortunately, it was not enough as Chile moved on 1-0.
6.Sergio Romero, Argentina vs Holland 2014
With a match-winning save on Wesley Sneijder on penalty kicks, Sergio Romero advanced Argentina to the World Cup finals for the first time since 1990.
7.Dino Zoff, Italy vs Brazil 1982
Known as the Italian Wall, goalkeeper Dino Zoff made one of the most spectacular saves off a rocket of a header in the 82nd minute in the 1982 World Cup. Italy held on to the 3-2 lead, advancing to the semifinals and eventually becoming World Cup champions.
8.Tim Howard, USA vs Belgium 2014
In what was a world record for saves in a World Cup game, Tim Howard blocked 16 shots against a wave of Belgium attacks. One of the most remarkable saves came off Howard’s foot as he used his entire body to prevent a goal from Eden Hazard in the 75th minute to keep the score level at 0-0. He’d make another amazing save on Hazard in the 78th minute. Belgium won the match 2-1.
9.Guillermo Ochoa, Mexico vs Brazil 2014
In a group stage match between Mexico and Brazil in the 2014 World Cup, Guillermo Ochoa made an excellent diving save to deny a Neymar header. The game ended 0-0 with Mexico advancing to the Round of 16.
10.Gianluigi Buffon, Italy vs Germany 2006
Gianluigi Buffon appears twice on this list for his breathtaking performance in the 2006 World Cup. In a semifinal match against Germany, he reacted quickly to deflect a Lukas Podolski rocket shot.
Lukas Podolski might not be the best at tracking back, but he does have one hell of a left peg on him.
That makes Buffon’s acrobatic save against him in their semi-final contest all the more impressive.
Buffon finished the tournament allowing only two goals on the way to the World Cup trophy.
Buffon’s strength and agility helped ensure Italy reached the final, and to become that year’s champions.
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