10 Tallest Goalkeepers in the World
The importance of height cannot be overlooked in goalkeeping. It's not a coincidence that the average height of goalkeepers in the biggest football leagues in the world hover around 6'2". Tall goalkeepers have long reach which allows them to make very critical saves; these can be the defining moments of a match. They also possess a sort of presence that can be intimidating to strikers. Very tall goalkeepers give the illusion of covering the entire goal area when faced with a one-on-one situation.
Even though height has its advantages in goalkeeping, it presents its own problems when it gets to the extremities. Extremely tall players are usually less coordinated, weak, and have very poor reflexes. These are undesirable traits in goalkeeping. This is the reason it's hard to find elite goalkeepers over 6'7" in most of the big football leagues. Therefore, most of the goalkeepers on this list might be unknown even to hardcore football fans.
10) Lazar Jovisić (Height: 2.02 m or 6 ft 7 1⁄2 in)
The Serbians are known to produce tall players like Nikola Zigic and so it comes as no surprise that one of the tallest goalkeepers in the world hails from this region. Lazar Jovisić started his career at FK Jedinstvo Stara Pazova where he did very well catching the attention of Serbian SuperLiga side FK Borac Čačak. However, he didn’t get any playing time at FK Borac Čačak and so joined Portuguese Primeira Liga side C.D. Nacional. He then made a series of moves and eventually ended up returning to his home country to play for FK Jedinstvo Stara Pazova.
9) Zeljko Kalac (Height: 2.02 m or 6 ft 7 1⁄2 in)
Zeljko Kalac goes by the nickname, “Spider”, due to his tall, gangly 6'7 1⁄2" frame. He is currently retired and was one of the tallest soccer players of his time. He played for successful soccer clubs like AC Milan and Leicester City. However, he didn’t enjoy much playing time at these clubs. At Leicester City, he only made three first team appearances. He made two UEFA Champions League appearances for Milan and also played in the Coppa Italia tournament.
8) Paolo Domenico Acerbis (Height: 2.02 m or 6 ft 7 1⁄2 in)
Paolo Acerbis is a relatively unknown goalkeeper from Italy despite standing at a commanding height of 6'7 1⁄2". He started his career with AlbinoLeffe and performed well there retaining his position as their first choice goalkeeper for many years. He then moved to Triestina but could only make it as their third choice goalkeeper. From the period of 2008 to 2012, he played for football clubs like Grosseto, Catania, and Vicenza. He returned back to Catania in 2016 where he is currently playing.
7) Kjell Petter Opheim (Height: 2.03 m or 6 ft 8 in)
This Norwegian goalkeeper will dwarf most players in the big leagues. He is a whopping 5” taller than the average premier league goalkeeper who stands at 6’3”. He plays for Stryn Football, a third tier league team from Norway. Kjell Opheim has also played for other clubs in Norway such as two-time Norwegian Premier League winners Lyn Football and the 1983 Norwegian Cup winners Moss FK.
6) Costel Pantilimon (Height: 2.03 m or 6 ft 8 in)
This man needs no introduction to fans of the EPL. Costel Pantlimon currently plays for Watford and is currently the tallest player in the Premier League. He was acquired by Manchester City as a backup goalkeeper for Joe Hart. He performed greatly in the 2013–14 League Cup which Manchester City went ahead to win. He also spent one and a half seasons with Sunderland. Pantilimon features regularly for the Romanian National team and is remembered for his remarkable performance against France in the Euro 2012 qualifiers where he kept a clean sheet and helped his team defeat France 2-0.
5) Jason Mooney (Height: 2.04 m or 6 ft 8 1⁄2 in)
Jason Mooney is a Northern Irish goalkeeper who plays for Cliftonville in the NIFL Premiership. He has been unable to rise into the big leagues as a player and has mostly played for clubs in the English Lower Leagues like York City, Accrington Stanley, Wycombe Wanderers, Oxford City, Alfreton and Tranmere Rovers. At 6-foot-8 and a half inches tall, Mooney is one of the tallest players in the UK.
4) Daniel Müller (Height: 2.05 m or 6 ft 9 in)
Daniel Müller is a German goalkeeper who has had some brief spells with Bayern Munich but unfortunately never made a first team appearance for the most successful club in German football history. Müller was at Augsburg briefly but was unable to secure a place as a first choice goalkeeper. He currently plays for the relatively unknown SV Seligenporten with the hope of getting more playing time. At 6-foot-9, he towers over current Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, who is a giant in his own right.
3) Vanja Ivesa (Height: 2.05 m or 6 ft 9 in)
Vanja Ivesa is a veteran goalkeeper who has spent most of his career in his native Croatia. At 6’9”, he is one of the tallest goalkeepers to come out of Croatia. He began his career with NK Istra and later moved to Australia where he played for Sydney United. He spent 3 years in the Turkish second division after which he returned to play again in Croatia.
2) Tonny Brogaard (Height: 2.06 m or 6 ft 9 in)
Tonny Brogaard hasn’t enjoyed much success as a professional goalkeeper. The 6’9” Dane has had trouble making it as a first choice goalkeeper at most of the teams he has been to. He was acquired by the English club, Doncaster Rovers, but didn’t find much playing time there. He currently plays for his boyhood team of Frem in the Danish third division. Brogaard goes by the nickname ‘the Gentle Giant’ due to his calm demeanour.
1) Kristof Van Hout (Height: 2.08 m or 6 ft 10 in)
This legit giant from Belgium is officially the tallest goalkeeper and the tallest professional soccer player in the world and holds the record with Paul Millar who also stands at 6'10". He is a very intimidating goalkeeper and is very good at aerial balls as one would expect. The most reputable club Hout has played for is Belgian giants Standard Liege, who have won the Belgian League an impressive ten times. He currently plays for Belgian Pro League side KVC Westerlo. His only trophy as a player came when he won the Belgian Cup with Genk in 2013.