Today is Ray Clemence’s birthday, with the former Liverpool and Spurs man turning 61.
A true legend of the English game, he won 21 trophies at club level, and was a key part of Liverpool’s success in the 1970’s. After leaving Liverpool in 1981, Clemence moved to Spurs, carrying on his success with three cup successes - in the FA Cup, Charity Shield and UEFA Cup.
As well as his success at club level, Clemence enjoyed a prosperous career at international level, winning 61 caps for England. Unfortunately though, he was playing at a time when the Three Lions were struggling on the international stage, and the rise of Peter Shilton caused him to lose his place.
His last cap was won in 1984, but he will always go down as one of England’s greatest ever stoppers, and one of the best to ever play in English league football.
To celebrate Clemence’s birthday, we take a look at five of the best English goalkeepers to have graced the beautiful game.
Second most caps and second most clean sheets in England history, Seaman was a stalwart for the Three Lions throughout the 1990’s and early 2000’s. He set a record of making 15 years worth of consecutive appearances, although the enduring memory of being lobbed by Ronaldinho in 2002 is not a good one.
One time holder of Sheffield Wednesday’s appearance record, Springett made just 33 appearances for England, but was a vital component of their rise on the international scene. First choice in the 1962 World Cup, when England lost in the quarter finals to Brazil, he was also part of the 1966 squad, but lost his starting place to Gordon Banks.
Clemence himself gets a mention in the top five goalkeepers in English football, with his long career bringing a wealth of success. Never a starting ‘keeper at a World Cup, he did play in the European Championships, and his success at club level deserves a place here.
The most capped England player in history, with three World Cups to his name, as well as the joint consecutive clean sheet record in World Cups with 10, Shilton is an England legend. He fell to the Hand of God and Maradona’s magic feet, but also helped the Three Lions reach the semi-finals of Italia ’90 with displays of assurance and leadership.
Undoubtedly the best ever English goalkeeper, and one of the best in history, Banks was a central part of 1966 World Cup success. He also featured in the 1970 edition of the tournament, making the save from Pele widely considered the best ever in football history.