Goalkeepers are able to play for many more years as compared to outfield players. A good example is 40-year-old Italian Gianluigi Buffon. He joined PSG this summer after leaving Juventus at the end of last season. This is now going to be his 23rd season in competitive football and he looks great. Former Manchester United shot-stopper Edwin Van der Sar played until his 40th birthday too. Today, we want to see where these two greats rank in our top five list of keepers with longest careers in football history.
5. Brad Friedel- 25 Years
The former USA and Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper was without a doubt one of the best shot-stoppers of his generation. He may not have played for the best teams in Europe but playing consistently for 25 years is not a joke. He was one of the most difficult goalkeepers to beat and many strikers will tell you that for sure.
4. Essam El-Hadary- 25 Years (Active)
Egypt goalkeeper Essam El-Hadary who became the oldest player in World Cup history in Russia, has announced his retirement from international soccer aged 45. pic.twitter.com/XBg65TLGKr
— Babu Abdalla (@BabuAbdalla) August 8, 2018
Egypt legendary goalkeeper Essam El-Hadary became the oldest player ever to feature in FIFA World Cup history. The 45-year-old shot-stopper was given a chance to start in the final group game against Saudi Arabia and he actually saved a penalty. He plays for local club Ismaily. He enjoyed a lot of success with giants Al-Ahly between 1996 and 2008. This includes all domestic trophies as well CAF Champions League. Nobody really knows when he will ever stop playing but after World Cup elimination in Russia, he announced retirement from International football.
3. Mark Schwarzer- 26 Years
Happy birthday Mark Schwarzer! pic.twitter.com/6qQfRL8Q6Z
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) October 6, 2016
Former Australia International goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer finally accepted to hang his boots in 2016 after 26 years between the posts. The shot-stopper was lucky to be in the right place in the right time to lift the Premier League title with Leicester City in 2016. This was only one year after winning the title again with Chelsea in 2015.
The veteran keeper also played for Middlesbrough, Fulham, and Bradford City. He started his career in 1990 with Australian side Marconi Fairfield. He represented his country in 2006 and 2010 Germany and South Africa World Cups respectively. He made 109 caps for the Socceroos.