Thibaut Courtois is currently the Real Madrid goalkeeper. However, Iker Casillas is the definitive name when it comes to a Real Madrid goalkeeper and he is considered to be the best in the club’s history. Casillas was also a legendary captain for the club and led from the front and delivered several titles.
Real Madrid is one of the biggest clubs in world football, if not being the greatest. Few other teams can match their history and heritage and nobody comes close to them when it comes to European dominance.
While a lot of that success has been built on the back of a sturdy defence, a fluid midfield, as well as a dynamic attack, Real Madrid have also had some legendary goalkeepers playing for them over the years. These goalkeepers have often come up with big game performances to not only keep Real Madrid alive in the tie, but to also motivate and inspire them to make strong comebacks.
Here we will talk about the best goalkeepers in Real Madrid history and who comes out on top:
Real Madrid goalkeeper: Top 5 names in history
|Goalkeeper||Nationality||Active between||Major titles won|
|Iker Casillas||Spain||1999-2020||Champions League, La Liga, Copa del Rey|
|Ricardo Zamora||Spain||1916-1938||La Liga, Spanish Cup|
|Juan Alonso||Spain||1946-1963||European Cup, La Liga|
|Keylor Navas||Costa Rica||2005-present||Champions League, La Liga|
|Thibaut Courtois||Belgium||2009-present||Champions League, La Liga|
Goalkeepers will come and goalkeepers will go but nobody will be able to match the impact and legacy that Iker Casillas has at Real Madrid. Called ‘San Iker’ (or Saint Iker) affectionately, Casillas is described by Real Madrid fans as a modern day saint of the game.
Having come up through the youth system at Madrid, he is born and bred Real Madrid through and through. Casillas has over a 1000 professional appearances for Real Madrid during his career and he also holds the record for keeping the most clean sheets in the UEFA Champions League as well with the Spanish national team.
Also Read: Real Madrid best players
Casillas was only 19 years and four days old when he won his first Champions League with Real Madrid, becoming the youngest goalkeeper to win the prestigious trophy. He is not only the most decorated goalkeeper in Real Madrid, but in all of Spanish football and he was the captain when Spain won their first ever FIFA World Cup and European Cup.
He has won five La Ligas and three Champions League titles with Real Madrid before leaving for FC Porto on a free transfer in 2015.
Ricardo Zamora was so good as a goalkeeper that he was called ‘El Divino’ (The Divine One). Born in Catalonia, he featured for both FC Barcelona and Espanyol before making his move to Real Madrid in the Spanish capital.
Also Read: Most La Liga titles
Zamora was the leading goalkeeper of his time and he was prominent because of his quick reflexes, sharp athleticism, and accurate handling in between the posts. Zamora is a legend in Spain and the trophy for the best goalkeeper in La Liga over a season is named after him and is called the Zamora Trophy.
Real Madrid were the first major success story in European football when they won five European Cups in a row in the 1950s. Goalkeeper Juan Alonso played a major role in each of those successes and was the dependable figure at the back for Los Blancos during that unprecedented series of achievements.
Also Read: Champions League winners list
With five European Cups and four league titles in his CV, Alonso is easily one of the most important figures in the club’s history. He had 225 professional appearances for Los Blancos spread across 14 long seasons. Alonso won 18 trophies with Real Madrid and played alongside other legends like Alfredo Di Stefano and Ferenc Puskas.
He had to end his career after a mysterious collar-bone problem emerged.
One of the more recent goalkeepers to make it to this list, Keylor Navas is a well loved figure at the Santiago Bernabeu. Signed in 2014 after sensational performances at the FIFA World Cup in Brazil, Keylor Navas really took over the gloves at Real Madrid following the departure of club legend Iker Casillas in 2015.
He inherited the number 1 jersey from San Iker and quickly established himself as an extremely dependable figure between the sticks for Los Blancos. Of course, the highlight of his career at Real Madrid was playing a vital role in winning three consecutive Champions Leagues. There are countless examples of him coming up with the necessary brilliance to keep Real Madrid alive in the Champions League and he has always shown a big game mentality.
In La Liga, too, Navas was very important for his side. He became the first non-Spanish goalkeeper to register more than 100 La Liga appearances under his belt and was also the first Costa Rican to win the Champions League. Besides the three Champions League titles, he has also won one Copa del Rey, four FIFA Club World Cups, and three UEFA Super Cups with Real Madrid before joining PSG in 2019.
Thibaut Courtois is the Real Madrid goalkeeper right now. Courtois is easily one of the best goalkeeper in the world these days. It took the lanky Belgian a couple of years to truly prove his worth after becoming the most expensive goalkeeper, when Real Madrid signed him from Chelsea for €38 million in 2018.
However, now he is a two-time La Liga winner and has also been massive for Real Madrid in the Champions League. In fact, it was Courtois’ unbelievable heroics against Liverpool in the final that kept the opposition forwards at bay and helped Real Madrid win their 14th Champions League title. Without him, that victory wouldn’t have been possible.
Courtois has been going through a particularly sweet purple patch in his career since the 2020/21 season. He has already won the Yashin Trophy for being the best goalkeeper in the world and has also won several Zamora awards in La Liga. The 30-year-old has the highest percentage of saves in the Champions League this season (78.1%) and the second-most saves per 90 (3.9).
With Thibaut Courtois at the helm, the legacy of great goalkeepers donning the Real Madrid jersey continues well and strongly.
Who was the Real Madrid goalkeeper in 2018?
Thibaut Courtois has been with Real Madrid for five years after signing for the club in 2018.
Which other clubs has Thibaut Courtois played for?
Thibaut Courtois has played for Genk, Atletico Madrid, and Chelsea besides Real Madrid.
Who is the most legendary Real Madrid goalkeeper?
Iker Casillas is the most legendary goalkeeper in Real Madrid’s history.