Premier League’s best backup goalkeepers rated – from worst to first

Being a Premier League backup goalkeeper is a strange career.

You train with world-class players week in, week out, but know without an injury to the club’s No.1 you have little chance of featuring in the first-team.

New signing Adrian ended up being Liverpool’s hero in the Super Cup
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Liverpool’s second-choice keeper Adrian grasped his opportunity with both hands against Chelsea in the UEFA Super Cup on Wednesday night.

Alisson suffered a calf injury against Norwich on the opening weekend of the season allowing the Spaniard to fill the space between the sticks.

The former West Ham shot-stopper was the penalty shoot-out king for Jurgen Klopp’s men, saving Tammy Abraham’s penalty and sealing victory.

But where does Adrian rank amongst the best backup goalkeepers in the Premier League?

Below, rates all 20 of the top flight’s No.2s…

20. Simon Moore – Sheffield United

The former Cardiff goalkeeper is yet to make a Premier League appearance during his career. Manchester United loanee Dean Henderson is well ahead him in the pecking order at Bramall Lane.

Simon Moore is still waiting to make his first Premier League appearance
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19. David Button – Brighton

Button excelled during a two-year spell with Brentford in the Championship, before sealing a switch to west London rivals Fulham.

After a promising start at Craven Cottage he was eventually displaced, and now acts as Mat Ryan’s deputy at the Premier League club.

David Button has a good Championship pedigree
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18. Artur Boruc – Bournemouth

Was Eddie Howe’s first-choice keeper before Asmir Begovic joined from Chelsea two years ago.

The former Celtic shot-stopper now looks set for a spell on the bench after youngster Aaron Ramsdale was handed his first Premier League start against Sheffield United following an impressive pre-season campaign.

The Cherries also have Begovic and Mark Travers on their books.

Experienced goalkeeper Artur Boruc turns 40 next February
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17. Jed Steer – Aston Villa

Steer spent the first half of last season on loan at Charlton, where he impressed sufficiently enough to earn a recall to his parent club – who he helped earn promotion to the Premier League via the play-offs.

Jed Steer, left, made a string of outstanding performances for Aston Villa
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16. Roberto Jiminez Gago – West Ham

Roberto, who has played more than 300 senior matches in Spain, Portugal and Greece, joined the club on a free transfer this summer.

The 33-year-old was picked ahead of David Martin in pre-season when fans’ favourite Lukasz Fabianski was out injured.

Roberto featured for his new club during pre-season
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15. Jonas Lossi – Everton

Lossi was part of a side with the second-worst defence in the Premier League last season but was available on a free transfer which suited the Toffees.

Will act as Jordan Pickford’s understudy at Goodison Park.

Jonas Lossi played a leading role in Huddersfield’s survival from the Premier League in 2017/18
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14. Karl Darlow – Newcastle

Darlow was once earmarked as a potential No 1 for the Magpies, but Martin Dubravka’s arrival last summer put an end to that.

Karl Darlow (Goalkeeper - click the right arrow above to see the rest of the uncapped England XI)
Former Nottingham Forest goalkeeper Karl Darlow
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13. John Ruddy – Wolves

The former Norwich goalkeeper lost his place to Rui Patricio last season following the club’s promotion to the Premier League in the 2017/18 campaign.

John Ruddy played a big role in Wolves’ promotion to the Premier League in 2018
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12. Wayne Hennessey – Crystal Palace

The Wales international endured a troublesome 2018/19 campaign, both on and off the field.

Faces a tough task in displacing Vicente Guaita as Roy Hodgson’s No.1.

Wayne Hennessey has a battle to regain the No 1 spot at Selhurst Park
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11. Joe Hart – Burnley

The former England international started last season as Sean Dyche’s No 1, but that soon changed when Nick Pope and former Claret Tom Heaton overtook him in the standings.

This looks unlikely to change anytime soon with Pope now top dog.

Joe Hart watched the second half of last season from the bench

10. Danny Ward – Leicester

The former Liverpool stopper sealed a £12.5million move to the King Power Stadium last summer, but Kasper Schmeichel remains the club’s top dog.

Danny Ward, 26, is having to bide his time at Leicester

9. Emiliano Martinez – Arsenal

Has had several loan spells away from the Emirates during his time at the club.

Impressed at Reading last season as they secured their Championship status.

Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez set for Wolves loan move
Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez

8. Heurelho Gomes – Watford

Second choice to Ben Foster at Vicarage Road, but the 38-year-old enjoyed an extended run in the side during the Hornets fairytale run to the FA Cup final last season – where they would end up on the wrong end of a 6-0 drubbing to a simply relentless Manchester City side.

He seemed set to retire but will now carry on for one more campaign.

Heurelho Gomes considered retiring at the end of last season
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7. Ralf Fahrmann – Norwich

Joined the club this summer on a season-long loan deal from Schalke.

Tim Krul is the club’s current No 1, but Fahrmann will be hoping for an opportunity to impress in the first team.

There is a potential permanent transfer on the horizon at the end of the season.

Ralf Fahrmann will be hoping to earn a permanent transfer to England’s top flight
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6. Adrian – Liverpool

Liverpool’s hero in their dramatic UEFA Super Cup penalty shoot-out win over Chelsea on Wednesday night.

Had an indifferent time towards the end of his spell at West Ham, but the Spaniard is a decent backup option for the Reds.

Adrian was the hero in Liverpool’s Super Cup win over Chelsea on Wednesday night
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5. Alex McCarthy – Southampton

There will be a three-way battle for the No 1 shirt again at St Mary’s this season, with McCarthy facing strong competition in Angus Gunn and Fraser Forster.

Alex McCarthy is a solid understudy to £13.5m signing Angus Gunn at Southampton
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4. Willy Caballero – Chelsea

One of the best penalty savers around.

The experienced shot-stopper, who was previously at Manchester City, has made 22 appearances for the Blues during his two-year spell at the club to date.

Willy Caballero has been primarily used as a backup over the last few seasons

3. Paulo Gazzaniga – Tottenham

Mauricio Pochettino has frequently used the Argentinian as his stand-in keeper for Hugo Lloris, when necessary.

The Frenchman endured an error-prone period at one stage last season, with calls for Gazzaniga to get more first-team opportunities.

There have been calls for Paulo Gazzaniga to be given more game time at Tottenham over the past year

2. Claudio Bravo – Manchester City

Recovered from a shaky first season in England to establish himself as a vital part of Pep Guardiola’s squad.

The 36-year-old impressed as City secured their first silverware of the season against Liverpool in the Community Shield final.

Claudio Bravo is an excellent understudy at Manchester City

1. Sergio Romero – Manchester United

An outstanding second choice goalkeeper for United to have on their books.


Has shown real composure between the sticks for the Red Devils, and will no doubt keep David De Gea on his toes again this season.

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Sergio Romero – 6
Sergio Romero is a top class back-up option at Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s disposal

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