Long balls by goalkeepers from 36 leagues worldwide

Goalkeepers play an important role in football these days. Many times they play the first ball offensively and/or are the resort defensively. 


Therefore, passes that are played forward can be crucial. Below are some number from goalkeepers from 36 leagues worldwide with regards to their long balls played forward.


In this case, analysed goalkeepers had to play a total of 1.000 domestic league minutes and a long ball is defined as at least 40 meters with a span angle of 90°.


Generally, the percentage of long balls taken (from all passes) by goalkeepers stretches from 8.2 (Keylor Navas PSG) to 83.6% (Gergo Racz Paksi FC) 


Manuel Riemann (VFL Bochum German 1st division) played the most long balls (in total numbers) on average (27.5/match) with Keylor Navas (PSG) playing the least amount (1.7/match).


Interestingly, Gianluigi Donnarumma (also PSG) is second in terms of relative long passes per match with 1.8. 



On a league level, the percentage of goalkeepers’ long forward passes stretches from only 35.7% in the Turkish Süper Lig up to 58.4% in the Scottish Premiership. High figures were also recorded in the Argentinean Liga Profesional (47.5%) and the English Championship (49.0%). 


If goalkeepers passing data reflect the style of play of teams is debatable, however it might shows some tendencies with regards to goalkeeper being pressured and/or passing options available and/or coaches tactical instructions and/or score line and/or opposition rank (or a combination of the mentioned).





- https://www.football-observatory.com/IMG/sites/b5wp/2021/wp381/en/

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