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What height should goalkeeper have?

What height should have goalkeeper? How many cm you need to have in order to be goalkeeper in polish Lotto Ekstraklasa, Premier League, Ligue 1, Primera División or Serie A? Does height dimensions have any sense? Is it just? For those quiestions I will try to find answer for you in this article. So, let's get started!


Poland is famous because of good goalkeepers. We have plenty of them playing in top clubs and top leagues in Europe. Polish National team for many years also have good quality goalkeepers. Why is it so? Is it because of good keepers training in Poland? In my opinion it's not. It's because of position's specific. There is a lot of competition and it makes all of goalkeepers to impreove their skills. As a watchful observer, I notice goalkeepers are more aware and willing to self-improve than players in other positions. This greatly affects the specifics of the game on the goal. Here the fight for number 1 and regular appearances look quite different. Goalkeepers are harder to get into the first line-up and stay in there. It is difficult to become a hero and much easier to become the main culprit.






The high level of Polish goalkeepers is also because of physical predisposition. Polish are just high. Well ... what prompted me to write this article is a rule that goes through the football environment in my country. A good goalkeeper must be HIGH. 187 cm is the absolute minimum. If you are a good keeper and you can even do magic on your goal... but you are lower, then unfortunately it will be hard for you to get to the team in polish league. Do clubs actually stick to this principle? Let's check it.





Łukasz Fabiański - 190 cm

Łukasz Skorupski - 187 cm

Wojciech Szczęsny - 196 cm

Przemysław Tytoń - 194 cm



Grzegorz Sandomierski - 196 cm

Adam Wilk - 189 cm

Michal Peskovic - 188 cm


Bruk-Bet Termalica Nieciecza

Jan Mucha - 189 cm

Dariusz Trela - 189 cm


Lechia Gdańsk

Dusan Kuciak - 194 cm


Wisła Płock

Mateusz Kryczka - 194 cm

Seweryn Kiełpin - 184 cm


Arka Gdynia

Pavels Steinbors - 191 cm

Szymon Więckowicz - 192 cm

Krzysztof Pilarz - 184 cm


Pogoń Szczecin

Łukasz Załuska - 191 cm

Adrian Henger - 189 cm


Piast Gliwice

Jakub Szmatuła - 187 cm

Dobrivoj Rusov - 188 cm


Korona Kielce

Maciej Gostomski - 195 cm


Śląsk Wrocław

Jakub Wrąbel - 194 cm

Dominik Budzyński - 189 cm

Jakub Słowik - 190 cm


Sandecja Nowy Sącz

Michał Gliwa - 188 cm

Łukasz Radliński - 187 cm

Kacper Tomasik - 190 cm


Górnik Zabrze

Tomasz Loska - 189 cm

Wojciech Pawłowski - 190 cm

Grzegorz Kasprzik - 186 cm


Wisła Kraków

Julian Cuesta - 195 cm

Michał Buchalik - 190 cm



Marian Kelemen - 188 cm

Krzysztof Karpieszuk - 187 cm

Luka Gugeszaszwili - 196 cm

Damian Węglarz - 187 cm



Arkadiusz Malarz - 189 cm

Radosław Cierzniak - 187 cm

Jakub Szumski - 194 cm


Zagłębie Lubin

Martin Polacek - 199 cm

Konrad Forenc - 191 cm

Dominik Hładun - 190 cm


Lech Poznań

Jasmin Buric - 194 cm

Matus Putnocky - 195 cm

Miłosz Mleczko - 191 cm



As you can see in Lotto Ekstraklasa are some goalkeepers with lower height than the limit. So if you're a bit lower than 187 cm there is still hope for you to play in polish top league. The most interesting is that more chances you can have abroad in... better league than Polish one! 



Primera Division





When the director of the Puente Castro Academy, Jorge Bruña heard about our requirements for goalkeeper growth, he was very surprised. He immediately gave an example of Keylora Navas, who is 185 cm tall and plays at the best club in the world. This is not my subjective opinion, only fact - Real Madrid in the 2016/2017 season has won actually everything that was possible, and the keeper from Costa Rica had in these successes a lot of influence. In the Final of the Champions League against Juventus in Cardiff he showed off in the first half a few key saves.





The mischievous may say that if he had a few centimeters more than he has, he would have saved the shot of Mandzukic. By the way it this goal have won the title of the most beautiful goal of the entire edition of the Champions League 2016/17. In any case, if you measure less than 187 cm and you care about playing well, then Spain can be your salvation. Spaniards are generally much lower than Polish and clubs do not have special requirements for goalkeeper growth. With 180 cm and walking in the crowd of Spaniards, you will be about a head higher than any of the passersby.





Roberto Mancini who knows french market very well told me that goalkeepers there just must be good. We can find very interesting examples in Ligue 1. Anthony Lopes (184 cm) is first keeper of Olympique Lyonnais. The second one is Lucas Mocio (197 cm). What do you say now? Any excuses?



Anthony Lopes





Valerio Spadoni, football scout of italian Romulea Calcio immediately told me that in Italy is almost same like in Poland. Goalkeeper must be tall. For example Buffon has 191 cm, Donnaruma has 196 cm, Alex Meret 190 cm and Samir Handanovic 193 cm. But history of italian football remembers great goalkeeper like Dino Zoff who has 182 cm. As you can see trends are changing. Probably now it would be much more difficult for Zoff to make as incredible career nowadays. And this is a guy who won World Cup and European Cup with Italian National Team and also 6 Serie A titles, 2 Coppa Italia and 1 UEFA Cup with Juventus.



Dino Zoff



I was looking for example of lower goalkeeper who plays in Serie A nowadays and I found one who plays in AS Roma - Bogdan Lobont, 185 cm.





In Portugal the are looking for tall goalkeepers but the have no special requirements. They like quick keepers which plays well with their feet. In fact it's true, for example Julio Cesar and Rui Patricio both have the a bit more than minimum height - 188 cm.





According to Pete Williams from England who knows market there very well, they are looking for goalkeepers... even higher than in Poland! The most wanted keepers have at least 190 cm. I point out that this is not the minimum threshold, this is just what they are looking for. The Premier League, due to its reputation and the money the clubs have at their disposal, can certainly afford to raise the bar with the words REQUIREMENTS. How is it in fact? Let's see some goalkeepers from top Premier League clubs.



De Gea



Manchester United

David de Gea - 192 cm



Thibaut Courtois - 199 cm



Petr Cech - 196 cm


Manchester City

Claudio Bravo - 185 cm

Ederson Moraes - 188 cm

Joe Hart - 196 cm (wyp. West Ham United)


Tottenham Hotspur

Hugo Lloris - 188 cm



Simon Mignolet - 193 cm


Leicester City

Kasper Schmeichel - 186 cm



Jordan Pickford - 185 cm



You can easily notce difference between theory and reality. Best example is replacement of Joe Hart by Claudio Bravo in Manchester City. 11 cm difference between them was nothing for Pep Guardiola who appreciate other goalkeeper skills. How it was for him and his club at the end is the other story. How many goals "The Citizens" conceeded because of Claudio Bravo and his "feet skills"... ok, this article is not about it. For you the most important is that there are always some exceptions and Premier League have a lot of them.



Goalkeepers scoring goals

Oscar "Conejo" Perez


The goalkeeper first of all should defend well. The history, however, shows that the players playing on this position can be key also close to the opponent's goal. If we talk about the growth of goalkeepers, an interesting example is Oscar "Conejo" Perez, Mexican Pachuka player, who is currently 44 years old and only 172 cm tall! Despite this, he has successfully defended so many years and has also scored important goals for his team. Below the video, where in the last second he scored and gave a tie to his team.



Oscar Perez - Gol



Jose Luis Chilavert


Paraguayan with 188 cm, who scored 64 goals during his career! Many of them  he scored from the penalty shootout, but also from free kicks. He did it both in the club and national team of Paraguay. He even scored a goal from his half of the pitch!



Jose Luis Chilavert - Gole



Rogerio Ceni


The most goals from all of goalkeepers in whole history scored Rogerio Ceni. This 188 cm player scored during his whole career 131 goals what is absolute record. Below you can watch 10 free kick goals of this goalkeeper.



Rogerio Ceni - 10 Najładniejszych Goli




Summing up the whole article - obviously scouts are looking for high goalkeepers. But growth is not any guarantee of engagement in a good club. Other skills and qualities such as reflexes, timing, reading, play with feet or leadership skills are valued. In Poland and England a few centimeters may be a problem, but there are countries (with better leagues than in Poland!), where growth is actually insignificant.



There is no time for complains, you need to train hard and look for opportunities. Who is looking for them, always find one. Where is the will there's the way. Sometimes success acomplish not the best one, but stubborn one. Be consistent in your actions and you will achieve what you want. If you're missing a few centimeters, it'll be just more difficult for you. But did anyone promise that it would be easy?


Good luck.


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