NCAA Preseason Goalkeeper Rankings - Women's 2018

cover photo belongs to WSU Student Sports Photos

Seniors

1. Ella Dederick (Washington State) - 22
2. Lainey Burdett (Arizona) - 21
3. Kaelyn Johns (Dayton) - 21
4. Shae Yanez (Tennessee) -21
5. Marnie Merritt (Mississippi) - 22
6. Arielle Schechtman (Georgetown) - 22
7. Alison Jahansouz (Stanford) - 22
8. Sydney Wootten (NC State) - 21
9. Alex Steigerwald (Murray State) - 21
10. Nonie Frishette (Wake Forest) - 21

Bill says: The biggest news from the senior class is the absence of Penn State's would-be starting goalkeeper Rose Chandler. Chandler's absence is rumored to be due to her pursuit of medical school, leaving an already thin graduating class even barer. Nevertheless, Dederick and Burdett are frontrunners for All-American honors, displaying the confidence and power to potentially make the jump to the professional game. Yanez, Merritt, and Wootten don't necessarily possess the ideal height for a professional goalkeeper but if they - or any senior - can consistently show scouts their ability to cover the goalmouth, they could very easily see themselves on some draft boards come January.

Juniors

1. Rylee Foster (West Virginia, Canada) - 20
2. Mandy McGlynn (Virginia Tech) - 19
3. Jalen Tompkins (Colorado) - 21
4. Jaelyn Cunningham (Illinois) - 20
5. Mikayla Krzeczowski (South Carolina) - 20
6. Haley Smith (Illinois State, Canada) - 20
7. Sam Miller (Lehigh) - 20
8. Sandy MacIver (Clemson, England) - 20
9. Katie Lund (TCU) - 21
10. Lauren Rood (Stanford) - 20

Bill says: Yet another group with a notable omission. Kentucky's Evangeline Soucie has recently moved on as the goalkeeper coach for the program after a strong sophomore season, where she ended fourth in the class. McGlynn (USA) and MacIver (England) will join their respective schools later than their peers, as both as participating in the U20 World Cup. And similar to last year, Rood will compete for the starting spot with Jahansouz while Katie Lund ended her sophomore year on a strong note, earning a U23 invite with the national team.

Sophomores

1. Laurel Ivory (Virginia) - 19
2. Hillary Beall (Michigan) - 19
3. Brooke Heinsohn (Duke) - 20
4. Lysianne Proulx (Syracuse, Canada) - 19
5. Kaylie Collins (USC) - 20
6. Emily Alvarado (TCU, Mexico) - 20
7. Sydney Schneider (UNC Wilmington, Jamaica) - 19
8. Madison Less (Cincinnati) - 20
9. McKinley Crone (Oklahoma) - 19
10. Hannah Sargent (Western Michigan) - 19

Bill says: Emily Alvarado is set to return to TCU after her U20 World Cup run, where she led her country to a 3-2 win over Brazil in their opening match. It's hard to see how TCU will handle both her and Lund vying for minutes but I'm sure their goalkeeper coach is well equipped to handle the star-studded roster. Beall was set to join her U20 teammates in France before a leg injury forced her removal from the World Cup squad, with no timeline given for a return. Heinsohn and Proulx combined for only a handful of games but are finally looking to take the starting spot with full force. Less and Sargent are hoping to build off their work earlier this summer, appearing for the Cleveland Ambassadors and Columbus Eagles, respectively.

Freshmen

1. Claudia Dickey (North Carolina) - 18
2. Brooke Bollinger (Florida State) - 18
3. Meagan McClelland (Rutgers) - 18
4. Zoe Clevely (Pepperdine) - 19
5. Olivia Sekany (California) - 19
6. Hensley Hancuff (Villanova) - 18
7. Katherine Asman (Penn State) - 18
8. Katie Meyer (Stanford) - 18
9. Mackenzie Wood (Northwestern) - 18
10. Holly Stam (Duke) - 18

Bill says: It's hard to have an appropriate ceiling for freshmen goalkeepers when they have respected upperclassmen to supplant first. While Bollinger's and Sekany's chances at starting seem to be theirs to lose for the time being, Clevely and Meyer may have to wait a year or two before they break through the crowded depth chart. Just about every goalkeeper on the list has USYNT experience under their belt from over the past few years although Dickey's two-sport aspirations (suiting up for both UNC soccer and basketball) are a rare sight for modern D1 programs.

 

Past Collegiate Goalkeeper Rankings

2015: Preseason and Final
2016: Preseason and Final
2017: Preseason and Final

The Pros and Cons of a Top Hand and Bottom Hand Save

cover photo belongs to EPA

For a shot heading towards the top corner, there are two main approaches for a goalkeeper to attempt the save: a top hand or bottom hand save. The terminology is fairly straightforward. Depending on which side the shot is, the top hand is on the side of the body where the shoulder is closest to the crossbar when the dive is made. If the shot is to the goalkeeper’s right, the left hand is the top hand and vice versa. The decision of hand choice only comes into play for shots in the top third of the goal. Anything lower than head-height is almost certainly the obvious, bottom hand.

Top hand save

Top hand save

Bottom hand save

Bottom hand save

There’s a little bit of a debate in some goalkeeping circles as to which approach is better. English goalkeeper Katie Startup wrote on the differences between the top and bottom hand saves - at eighteen years old, no less - but overall there isn't a ton of literature on the subject. Some coaches prefer the top hand acrobatics while others lean towards the simplicity of the bottom hand. Let’s break down the advantages for both types of saves.

Bottom Hand

Starting at the bottom and then heading to the top, the bottom hand save has a number of advantages. Most obviously, the bottom hand is closer to whichever post the goalkeeper is diving towards. With the ease of using the nearer hand on reaction saves, it makes sense to extend their territory for shots floating to the top corner. Whether it is a strong palm or fingertip save, the natural flow to the bottom hand dive matches the simplicity of the save. Additionally, it’s easier to line up the hand-to-ball coordination the closer the hand is to the ball.

The bottom hand save has a very specific bonus factor, one that isn’t discussed much, and it's centered on the wrist. For skipping or lofted balls to the goalkeeper's side, the bottom hand save offers a flick ability unique to the hand. For American audiences, they might remember Stefan Frei’s save that kept Seattle in the 2017 MLS Final. Non-millennial soccer fans may be familiar with Gordon Banks’ immaculate stop on Pele. And of course, our most hipster of readers will be quick to recall David Seaman’s Stretch Armstrong save in the 2003 FA Cup semi-final.

You can actually see a brief moment where Frei first chooses to go with the top hand but instead opts for the bottom hand.

All three are similar in that the flexibility of the wrist helps flick the ball from the goalmouth. This is a major advantage that the bottom hand can offer that the top hand would struggle on. It's almost the equivalent of a forehand throw on a frisbee versus a big bear paw. The forehand throw contains a lot of wrist action while the swatting bear paw has some, but not nearly as much. The danger with this save, that all three goalkeepers could have easily faced (and in Seaman's situation, did), is that it's hard to get a good clearance with this flick. This is why the top hand is preferred on back the bar situations. It's a great last resort to keep the ball out of the net, but there's a decent chance someone will follow up on it as well.

As for disadvantages with the bottom hand, there aren’t many poor aspects to the save, although there are areas the top hand is better at, which we’ll get into later down article. The main disadvantage to the bottom save is that it’s a little tricky jumping off your right foot and reaching for a ball with your right hand, or vice versa as David Seaman tried to pull off against Brazil in 2002. Notice how the narrator heckles the poor Englishman for his lack of jumping. Now Seaman displays a number of poor choices on the goal but had he gone for a top hand save, he would have been significantly closer to the ball and would have had an additional spring to his jump.

 

Top Hand

The 2018 World Cup offered us a number of memorable goalkeeping moments, some great and some that goalkeepers would like to forget, but it also featured a couple of stellar top hand saves. Russia' Igor Akineev made a wonderful tip over in the 90th minute against Uruguay, both Mohamed El-Shenawy and Lovre Kalinić utilized a top hand correctly, and of course, Courtois showed Neymar a massive paw in their quarterfinal matchup.

Top hand save at 0:32

Notice how far the ball is redirected off Courtois' hand, along with the other top hand saves linked above. This is a strong advantage to the top hand save. While the wrist does exhibit some movement on the play, the overall strength and leverage of the joint play a big role in making the save, along with the elbow extension and fingers flicking the ball onward. In contrast to the bottom hand's scooping or parrying mechanics (depending on the shot), the top hand implements a tossing motion where the wrist helps retain the momentum of the shot but slightly alters the trajectory of the ball.

While some are against the top hand entirely, the top hand can offer a little more reach across the goalmouth compared to the bottom hand, although it requires some time to cover the distance. If you were to stand with just your right foot on the ground, you can reach higher with your left hand by tilting your hips and shoulders than you could with your right hand. A similar process occurs when diving off the lead foot, the top hand will actually cover more distance (especially the more vertical the jump is) but will need a little more time to do so. This is why top hand saves typically occur when a goalkeeper has the time to move their feet. The graph shows below shows how, over time, the top hand (red line) can actually outcover the bottom hand (blue line).

As time passes (left to right), the top hand (red line) will eventually surpass the bottom hand (blue) in distance but is starting farther behind.

As time passes (left to right), the top hand (red line) will eventually surpass the bottom hand (blue) in distance but is starting farther behind.

Additionally, the top hand can get some nice leverage on a ball, more so than the bottom hand in most top corner save occasions. But with all the moving pieces to a top hand save, it's wise to remember what Uncle Ben told Peter Parker: with great power comes great responsibility. The same sentiment rings true for the top hand save. There are a lot of moving pieces and, unlike the bottom hand save, the goalkeeper’s vision becomes blocked by crossing the arm in front of his or her face. And then of course, there’s the danger of trying to use the top hand when the goalkeeper doesn’t have enough time to cover the distance with the hand. So while the top hand may offer some added oof to a save, it can easily leave a goalkeeper flapping at empty air if they don't approach it correctly.

 

Conclusion

When deciding which hand is the correct one for a save, the main response you’ll hear from coaches everywhere is “use whatever works”. This ties back into the style and personality that comes from each and every goalkeeper. Ideally a goalkeeper has tried both types of saves and has drawn the line on where they feel comfortable with each hand. Some goalkeepers will use their dominant hand regardless of the situation, which can lead to an unnecessary weakness for the goalkeeper. A goalkeeper should be efficient with both hands as they are with their feet, even if they have different preferences between themselves.

However a goalkeeper goes about choosing which hand to use, it’s good to remember the pros and cons of each. The bottom hand can reach the ball quicker and is typically more simple to line up, although it may not offer enough reach or leverage to displace to a ball that requires a goalkeeper to move their feet. The top hand save will typically parry a ball with a strong force and can cover the length of the goal better than the bottom hand, but will need the correct time and footwork to pull off the save.

The Top Ten Goalkeepers at the 2018 World Cup

While goalkeeping wasn't the highlight of the World Cup final, there were many outstanding performances in the lead up to the final game. Some goalkeepers reserved their best for penalty shootouts to pad their highlight reels, some were consistently aiding their team regardless of the scoreline, and some goalkeepers managed to undermine their previous performances by watching multiple shots slip by them in the World Cup Final. In spite of the mixed performances, here are the top ten goalkeepers from the 2018 World Cup.

 

Photo belongs to Imago

Photo belongs to Imago

1. Yann Sommer (Switzerland)

While Sommer technically did have an own goal off a late penalty in a meaningless group game, he more than redeemed himself with a strong performance against Brazil and Serbia. He would go on to pull off a wonderful sprawling save off a low header in the 6th minute to keep Costa Rica out and another similar save stopping a bouncing ball to the backpost against Sweden. Sommer, barely standing at 6’0”, is a great example of a goalkeeper who can cover the entire goal width without relying on his size. The tournament's Golden Glove recipient typically has to finish in the top four but it was Sommer who stood high above the rest. 

 

Photo belongs to AFP

Photo belongs to AFP

2. Igor Akinfeev (Russia)

Probably the highlight of Akinfeev’s tournament was outclassing David de Gea in the penalty shootout, winning Man of the Match for his heroics in the round of sixteen matchup. He would go on perform admirably against Croatia, saving a penalty in the second round of the shootout, and despite being down 2-0 in Russia’s last group game, Akinfeev managed to pull off a wonderful tophand save on a blistering strike from Cristian Rodríguez. A classic strong, tall goalkeeper, Akinfeev did well to represent the host country by limiting mistakes and rising to the occasion more than once to help Russia notch their best World Cup finish since 1982.

 

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3. Thibaut Courtois (Belgium)

There was a lot of talk about goals being scored in the final minutes this World Cup but Courtois reversed the script when Neymar attempted to level the score in the quarterfinal matchup. It’s hard to imagine any goalkeeper shorter than 6’6” making that tophand save. Earlier in the match, Courtois pulled off two good close-range shots in quasi-1v1 situations, simply by holding his ground and not rushing out blind, but it was the flicked near post header that bested Courtois against France. It was a tough post-to-post run Courtois was trying to make but there’s no doubt he would want a second chance at the goal. If he gets his feet set quicker instead of taking a big hop into place, he can parry the shot away. Still, the Golden Glove winner can look back proudly on his performances as large contributions to Belgium's best World Cup run to date.

 

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4. Jordan Pickford (England)

Most people were talking Pickford’s passing ability heading into the tournament but it was his clutch saving prowess that led the English to a fourth place finish. Against Colombia - in extra time, no less - it was the unbelievable Gumby save where he pulled the ball out of the corner. Against Sweden, he shut the door twice on the Swedes on two well-hit shots inside the 18. And against Croatia, Pickford exchanged some not-so-nice words after denying a point bank save from Mandžukić. It’s hard to imagine this was the same Pickford who started for Everton and conceded 58 goals last season, eight most in the Premier League. Blues fans will surely have different expectations going into this fall after such a wonderful performance this summer.

 

5. Eiji Kawashima (Japan)

There’s some sort of irony with Kawashima’s best game coming in a 1-0 loss but the Japanese goalkeeper couldn’t allow another goal if Japan wanted to play in the knockout round. In the first half, Kawashima himself ended up in the back of the net batting a flicker header towards the back post back into play. (VAR would later verify the immaculate save.) Then in the second half, Kawashima would pull off an equally impressive strong palm on a deflected cross, saving his defender from scoring an own goal and keeping Japan's hopes of entering the next round alive. While Kawashima’s performances in the other games were largely forgettable, the Poland game will surely be a bright spot on the 35-year-old’s tenure with Japan.

 

Photo belongs to Mexsport

Photo belongs to Mexsport

6. Guillermo Ochoa (Mexico)

A good game against Germany, a soft goal against Sweden, and a great game against Brazil add up to find Ochoa at the six slot. The most polarizing goalkeeper on the list, Ochoa somehow always matches the level of competition. Ochoa kicked off his World Cup with a shutout against Germany, highlighted by a topnotch free kick-denying save, and ended his tournament with a hard-fought 2-0 loss to Brazil. Although it was a loss, Ochoa continued his fiction-esque level of play against Brazil, building off of the 2007 Copa America win and the 2014 World Cup tie against Brazil. Ochoa’s success doesn’t make sense from a technical standpoint and his future with the national team seems to be running out, but viewers can’t deny he had another clutch tournament performance for the Mexican national team.

 

7. Jo Hyeon-Woo (South Korea)

Jo entered the tournament as a relatively unknown goalkeeper playing somewhere in South Korea and only six national caps to his name yet somehow walked away from the tournament with a stellar performance against Sweden and a shutout against Germany. The 26-year-old showcased a really fun spring to his leap and quick footwork to frustrate opposing offenses. He plays with a fairly high line and while I’m not sure how that’s going to fit into his game - he’s not exactly the tallest goalkeeper out there - his agility helps him cover ground that lumbering goalkeepers can’t.

 

8. Kasper Schmeichel (Denmark)

It hurts my heart to have him this low on the list. His string of penalty saves against Croatia paired with continual shots of his father cheering from the press box was exactly the snowballing ability I wrote about before the tournament started. Unfortunately, an in-game penalty save and two more in the shootout weren't enough to get Denmark through to the quarterfinals. He lands at number eight for having an otherwise quiet World Cup but the main highlight to take away from his World Cup was that Kasper Schmeichel officially stepped out of his father’s shadow and put to rest the idea that he was just riding his father's fame, even though it felt like the magic ended well before midnight in Denmark's World Cup run.

 

9. Manuel Neuer (Germany)

It wasn't exactly a world beater that bested Neuer in the opening game against Mexico but it was Neuer standing on his head that helped propel his nation to victory against Sweden, highlighted by a strong palm before halftime to parry away a drifting header. Even though his last touch was a turnover that led to the final goal against Germany - somehow 80 yards upfield, of course - we saw flashes of the four-time IFFHS World's Best Goalkeeper that hopefully provided enough nostalgia for fans wanting to see the Bayern keeper excel on the international stage at least one more time. Neuer won't look back fondly on the tournament and it's clear the injury didn't help his World cup preparations, but all-in-all it was a positive individual performance, even if it's overshadowed by the rest of his career.

 

10. Hugo Lloris (France)

Ahead of the tournament, many had some serious questions about Lloris’ ability to handle the ball at his feet and somehow Lloris proved them right yet still won the World Cup. Lloris was perhaps one goalkeeping error away from winning the Golden Glove, an award typically given to the top team with the goalkeeper who didn't make any dumb mistakes, but he graciously let Courtois take home the honor. It's easy to get caught up in the blunder but Lloris did his part to help France reach the Final. To his credit, he basically did nothing all game against Uruguay and Belgium yet pulled off two saves that were destined for the back of the net. It's a little bit of a head scratcher that he was able to maintain enough focus to make immaculate saves on a moments notice yet botch a stupid step over in the most important game of his career but it's Lloris who has a World Cup medal to his name at the end of the day.

Top 50 Goalkeepers in Women's Soccer (2018)

The Top 50 Women's Rankings return with just a little over a year until the next World Cup. Asia and South America have finalized their qualification process, which only leaves Africa, North America, and Europe to fill out the World Cup's final 16 spots this fall. We'll see a number of these goalkeepers in France next summer while the recently concluded UEFA Champions League had a handful as well.

The first set of rankings are based on current play, both club and country, while the U24 rankings are centered around projecting the top goalkeepers for the next World Cup cycle.

Click here to see the 2019 rankings.

 

rank. player, nationality (club / league) - age

1. Erin McLeod, Canada (USV Jena / Germany) - 35
2. Almuth Schult, Germany (Wolfsburg / Germany) - 27
3. Karen Bardsley, England (Manchester City / England) - 33
4. Stephanie Labbé, Canada (Free Agent) - 31
5. Alyssa Naeher, USA (Chicago Red Stars / USA) - 30
6. Tinja-Riikka Korpela, Finland (Vålerenga / Norway) - 32
7. Lisa Schmitz, Germany (Turbine Potsdam / Germany) - 26
8. Lydia Williams, Australia (Seattle Reign / USA) - 30
9. Lisa Weiss, Germany (SGS Essen / Germany) - 30
10. Carly Telford, England (Chelsea / England) - 30

Both Stephanie Labbé and Erin McLeod experienced setbacks with their clubs, as the PDL ruled Labbé wasn't eligible for PDL play and Jena were relegated to the second division after a 4-0 loss last week. Almuth Schult and Wolfsburg repeat as champions in the Bundesliga but Mary Earps' signing may put Schult's future with the club in question. Alyssa Naeher looks to maintain her starting spot with the US when they kick up qualifying in October but will first face Lydia Williams and Australia in the 2018 Tournament of Nations in the run-up to qualifying.

 

11. Adrianna Franch, USA (Portland Thorns FC / USA) - 27
12. Aubrey Bledsoe, USA (Washington Spirit / USA) - 26
13. Gaëlle Thalmann, Switzerland (Mozzanica / Italy) - 31
14. Haley Kopmeyer, USA (Orlando Pride / USA) - 28
15. Sandra Paños, Spain (Barcelona / Spain) - 25
16. Stephanie Ohrstrom, Sweden (Fiorentina / Italy) - 31
17. Michelle Betos, USA (Seattle Reign / USA) - 30
18. Katie Fraine, USA (Växjö / Sweden) - 30
19. Ashlyn Harris, USA (Orlando Pride / USA) - 32
20. Meline Gerard, France (Montpellier / France) - 28

A number of Americans fill in the batch here. Adriana Franch should be nearing her return to the field after undergoing surgery on her meniscus back at the end of April. Haley Kopmeyer patiently awaits in the wing to take over for Ashlyn Harris in Orlando. Michelle Betos has had a major resurgence in her career while Aubrey Bledsoe has broken onto the scene after being mostly a backup for a number of years. Lastly, Spanish goaltender Sandra Paños had a strong Champions League run before ending with a hard-fought showing to eventual champions Lyon in a close 3-1 series.

 

21. Adelaide Gay, USA (Portland Thorns / USA) - 28
22. Didi Haracic, USA (Washington Spirit / USA) - 26
23. Mary Earps, England (Reading / England) - 25
24. Sarah Bouhaddi, France (Lyon / France) - 31
25. Laëtitia Philippe, France (Montpellier / France) - 27
26. Karima Benameur, France (Paris FC / France) - 29
27. Sabrina D'Angelo, Canada (North Carolina Courage / USA) - 25
28. Hedvig Lindahl, Sweden (Chelsea / England) - 35
29. Laura O'Sullivan, Wales (Cyncoed Ladies / Wales) - 26
30. Loes Geurts, Netherlands (Göteborg / Sweden) - 32

Sarah Bouhaddi recently captured her fifth Champions League title and her third in as many years. Wales have managed to score only three goals in their five World Cup qualifying games yet have 11 points largely because Laura O'Sullivan hasn't conceded a goal in qualifying, with her best performance coming against England in a 0-0 draw. Mary Earps earned her first cap for England last year after three positive seasons with Reading and just recently signed with Wolfsburg for her efforts there. Sabrina D'Angelo has been kept busy in North Carolina, notching three 1-0 wins for the first place Courage, before stepping out with an ankle sprain.

 

 31. Sari van Veenendaal, Netherlands (Arsenal / England) - 28
32. Katarzyna Kiedrzynek, Poland (PSG / France) - 27
33. Genevieve Richard, Canada (Marseille / France) - 25
34. Rachael Laws, England (Sunderland / Englan) - 27
35. Oksana Zheleznyak, Kazakhstan (BIIK-Karzygurt / Kazakhstan) - 31
36. Kateryna Samson, Ukraine (Ryazan / Russia) - 29
37. Megan Dorsey, USA (AC Sparta Praha / Czech Republic) - 26
38. Friederike Abt, Germany (Hoffenheim / Germany) - 23
39. Lee Alexander, Scotland (Glasgow City / Scotland) - 26
40. Kaycee Gunion, USA (Sky Blue FC / USA) - 28
 

Katarzyna Kiedrzynek and Poland have a tough task in front of them next week as they need a win at home against Scotland to realistically keep their World Cup hopes alive. Ukraine hopes to lean heavily on Kateryna Samson as well, as they take on Sweden and Denmark this month to try to keep their foot in the World Cup's door. Megan Dorsey helped Sparta Praha reach the round of 16 in Champions League play, marking one of the better finishes by a Czech club in Champions League history.  Friederike Abt is the youngest goalkeeper in the list but she's proven more than reliable for Hoffenheim, finding another mid-table finish this year with the club.

 

41. Barbara Lorsheijd, Netherlands (ADO Den Haag / Netherlands) - 27
42. Erin Nayler, New Zealand (Bordeaux / France) - 26
43. Nicole Barnhart, USA (FC Kansas City / USA) - 36
44. Erina Yamane, Japan (Real Betis / Spain) - 27
45. Britt Eckerstrom, USA (Portland Thorns FC / USA) - 25
46. Lindsey Harris, USA (Klepp / Norway) - 24
47. Nora Gjøen, Norway (Sandviken / Norway) - 26
48. Neide Simões, Portugal (Valadares Gaia FC / Portugal) - 29
49. Audrey Baldwin, USA (Maccabi Kishronot Hadera / Israel) - 26
50. Daniele, Brazil (Santos / Brazil) - 25

Britt Eckerstrom has been a little streaky since filling in for an injured Adrianna Franch but has still kept the Thorns in playoff contention, earning back-to-back shutout wins this month. Lindsey Harris and Klepp have conceded ten goals in nine games and sit in third place in the Toppserien but need to climb over Nora Gjøen's Sandviken to qualify for Champions League play. Audrey Baldwin gave some good insight while writing from Women's Soccer Zone about her time in Kosovo and how she ended up in Israel.

 

Top 20 Goalkeepers Under 24

1. Sophie Baggaley, England (Bristol City / England) - 21
2. Carina Schlueter, Germany (SC Sand / Germany) - 21
3. Ellie Roebuck, England (Manchester City / England) - 18
4. Henrikka Mäkelä, Finland (PK-35 Vantaa / Finland) - 21
5. Anna Klink, Germany (Bayer Leverkusen / Germany) - 23
6. Mylene Chavas, France (Saint-Etienne / France) - 20
7. Lize Kop, Netherlands (Ajax / Netherlands) - 20
8. Merle Frohms, Germany (Wolfsburg / Germany) - 23
9. Emma Johansson, Sweden (Mallbacken / Sweden) - 21
10. Cecilie Fiskerstrand, Norway (Lillestrom / Norway) - 22

England's WSL has been exciting to watch a number of young goalkeepers get a chance to impress fans and coaches alike. Sophie Baggaley and Ellie Roebuck combined for 27 starts between the two and could soon find themselves in a similar spot as Mary Earps when a larger club wants a top end goalkeeper. Mylene Chavas rightfully won the 2016 U20 World Cup Golden Glove award and is set to return with France this cycle again, making France a strong candidate for winning the tournament. Cecilie Fiskerstrand has anchored Lillestrom's season and already has 14 caps to her name for Norway.

 

11. Solene Durand, France (Guingamp / France) - 23
12. Jane Campbell, USA (Houston Dash / USA) - 23
13. Elisa Launay, France (Lille / France) - 22
14. Aurora Mikalsen, Norway (Kolbotn / Norway) - 22
15. Emily Dolan, USA (Medyk Konin / Poland) - 23
16. Deborah Garcia, France (Rodez / France) - 23
17. Megan Walsh, England (Yeovil Town / England) - 23
18. Ayaka Yamashita, Japan (NTV Beleza / Japan) - 22
19. Casey Murphy, USA (Montpellier / France) - 22
20. Zecira Musovic, Sweden (Rosengard / Sweden) - 22

Jane Campbell has tried to take over the starting spot for the US but has struggled mightily with handling incoming aerial service. The USA might turn to Casey Murphy, who jumped fairly seamlessly from collegiate play in the states to France's Division 1. Japan's Ayaka Yamashita has appeared in international play 11 times, including the 2018 Algarve Cup as well as the recent Asian Cup, where Japan finished first and qualified for the World Cup.

 

For older rankings, you can see the 2017 list and the 2016 list for comparison.