cover photo by Craig Mitchelldyer
Following last year’s goalkeeper race, which can be found with an explanation at how we arrived at a single, compact number for each goalkeeper, this year’s battle for best goalkeeper in the league has been highlighted by underdogs and coming-off-the-bench goalkeepers. Early into the season, Maxime Crepeau (6.27) broke away from the pack as the lead candidate but Steve Clark (8.45) and Matt Turner’s (6.82) furious back half of the season saw a close finish between the three goalkeepers. Ultimately Steve Clark earned top of the chart honors, averaging out to an outstanding +.35 per 90 minutes and clearing second-place Matt Turner by 1.63 goals.
Clark and Turner weren’t the only goalkeepers who saw a strong second-half performance during the season. After a lackluster start, both David Bingham (5.55) and Luis Robles (4.36) displayed a dramatic improvement in goal, saving their teams multiple goals in the closing months. National team goalkeepers were mostly positive in MLS play. Sean Johnson (3.43) and Tim Howard (3.13) were consistently above average while Brad Guzan (0.59) and Nick Rimando (-1.91) bounced around the 0 mark for most the season.
Lastly, teams that made the biggest bang for their buck were, to no surprise, found with the top three goalkeepers. New England’s Matt Turner and Portland’s Steve Clark performed at a rate that warranted $1.4 million dollar salaries but were on $75,398 and $140,000 contracts, respectively. Maxime Crepeau gave a $740,000-worthy season as well, but only received $94,083 guaranteed compensation. Inversely, Bill Hamid, Vito Mannone, Andre Blake and others struggled to make up their six-figure contracts, playing at a fraction of their cost.
For more detail statistics on each goalkeeper, click here to view the web page which breaks down each goalkeeper’s contributions into seven categories, week-by-week performances, and how much they deserve to be paid. Calculations for projected salary can be found here, at the bottom of the page.
Goalkeepers not given a rank in the first column (starting with Zac MacMath and Clint Irwin) were excluded from the rankings for not playing half the games in the season.