15 Best South American Goalkeepers Ever

Who is the best South American goalkeeper in the history of football?

South American countries such as Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay are not only known to have football teams with strong attackers and midfielders. These countries have also produced many formidable goalkeepers who excel in the international world. Some of them even play for the biggest clubs in the world and won numerous individual accomplishments.

In this article, I present a list of 15 greatest South American goalkeeper of all time. I am sure that some names such as Jose Luis Chilavert, Dida, or Julio Cesar would have been very familiar to you. One more thing, just be sure to cast your vote for your favorite goalkeeper at the end of this article.

15. Oscar Cordoba

Oscar Cordoba started his debut as the goalkeeper of Colombian national team in 1993. In total, he played in 73 international matches before retiring in 2009. Cordoba's best achievement occurred during Copa America 2001, where he led Colombia to be the tournament's champion and at the same time he was named the best goalkeeper in the tournament. Not only that, Cordoba also holds a record as the only goalkeeper in the history of the Copa America that did not concede a single goal throughout the tournament.

Source: Wikimedia Commons
14. Julio Cesar

Julio Cesar is one of the South American goalkeepers who have the most career successful in Serie A. For seven years playing in the Italian league, he won five Serie A titles with Inter Milan. Not only that, Julio Cesar also managed to bring Inter win the Champions League in the 2009-2010 season and twice was named as the best goalkeeper of Serie A. His achievements with the national team of Brazil is also quite good, in which he helped the Samba team win the Confederations Cup twice and won one Copa America trophy.

Source: Wikimedia Commons: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marcos_Roberto_Silveira_Reis
13. Marcos

Marcos Roberto Silveira Reis is a Brazilian goalkeeper who spent his entire career playing for Palmeiras from 1992 to 2011. Marcos is also the first goalkeeper of Brazil national team that won the World Cup 2002. After his impressive performance in the tournament, Marcos was almost transferred to Arsenal, but he canceled at the last moment because he preferred to stay with Palmeiras.

12. Carlos Roa

Carlos Roa is an Argentine former goalkeeper who was recognized for his infamous beard. One of his best performances with Argentina national team occurred in the World Cup 1998 tournament, where he helped his team defeated England in a penalty shoot-out. At club level, Carlos Roa played pretty well with Real Mallorca where he won a Zamora Trophy (best goalkeeper award in La Liga) in 1998.

11. Roque Máspoli

Until now, Roque Maspoli probably is the best goalkeeper ever played for Uruguayan national team. In addition to winning six league titles with Uruguay's club, Penarol, he also led his country to be the World Cup 1950 champion by defeating Brazil in the final match. Throughout his career from 1945 to 1955, Maspoli played 38 times for the national team. After his retirement, he also briefly coached Penarol, helped the club win five league titles and even won Intercontinental Cup 1996 by beating Real Madrid 4-0 in the final match.

10. Sergio Goycochea

Goycochea's name was greatly praised when he played in the World Cup 1990. Actually, at that time he was just a substitute of the first team goalkeeper, Nery Pumpido. Unexpectedly, Pumpido was injured and Goycochea got a chance to play as the first-team goalkeeper. His performances were very impressive, where he was able to help Argentina win two penalties shoot-out against Yugoslavia and England. Since then, Goycochea known as a specialist on penalty shoot-out. Not only that, he also led Argentine national team win one Confederations Cup trophy and two Copa America trophies.

Source: Wikimedia Commons: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dida_(footballer_born_1973)
9. Dida

In addition to Julio Cesar, Dida is also classified as a South American goalkeeper who had a successful career in Serie A. He played for AC Milan from 2000 to 2010 and won one Serie A title and two Champions League trophies. His best performance occurred from 2003 to 2005, where he was awarded several individual titles, such as Best Goalkeeper of Serie A and UEFA's Best Goalkeeper Awards.

8. Amadeo Carrizo

Not just showing great performances in protecting the team's goal, Amadeo Carrizo is also known as an inspirational goalkeeper. He was one of the first goalkeepers in the world who came out of the penalty box to intercept the opponent's passes. Not only as a goalkeeper, Carrizo was also capable of acting as a sweeper. This player was known as one of the legendary players of River Plate, where he helped the club win five Argentine League titles.

Source: Wikimedia Commons
7. Hugo Gatti

Hugo Gatti is a retired goalkeeper who holds the record for the highest number of penalty kick saves in the Argentine League, with total of 26 saves. He is also one of the first goalkeepers who joins the team's attack, goes forward to the opponent's penalty box when his team gets a corner kicks or free kicks. Not only that, he is also the first to introduce the technique called "achique," where a goalkeeper run towards the opponent's forwards and try to grab or steal the ball from him.

6. Ubaldo Fillol

There is a very peculiar thing about Ubaldo Filol. In his two performances in the World Cup tournament, he didn't wear number 1 jersey despite being the main goalkeeper of Argentina. This is because the jersey number of Argentine national team was determined by the order of the alphabet name, so that the number 1 jersey was worn by a non-goalkeeper player. His best performance occurred in the World Cup 19878, in which he led Argentina became the champion of the tournament.

5. Claudio Taffarel

Taffarel is known as one of the greatest Brazilian goalkeepers. He was the first-team goalkeeper of Brazil national team in the World Cup 1994 and 1998. Taffarel's appearances in two major tournaments were quite impressive, where he managed to win the World Cup in 1994 and helped his team to be the runner-up of World Cup 1998. Throughout his career, Taffarel played 690 times for six different clubs, among them are Parma, Galatasaray and Atletico Miniero.

4. Rene Higuita

Higuita was nicknamed as "El Loco" or "The Mad Man." This is because he often shows crazy things in a match, including leaving his goal unguarded when he went forward and joined the attack. Not only that, Higuita is also often perform extraordinary acrobatic saves, one of which is known as "Scorpio Kick saves." Throughout his career, Higuita scored 41 goals. His best achievement is when he led Colombian national team win the third place in Copa America 1993 and 1995.

Source: Wikimedia Commons
3. Gilmar

Until now, Gilmar is the only player who played as the first-team goalkeeper and won the World Cup twice in a row. He is a player who is trusted to guard the Brazilian's goal in the World Cup 1958 and 1962, and Gilmar was able to carry out his duty very well. He is known as "Pele's goalkeeper" because in addition to the Brazilian national team, he also played along with Pele at Santos. Throughout his appearances for the Brazilian national team, he only conceded 95 goals from 104 matches.

2. Rogerio Ceni

With a total of 112 goals he scored during his 22-year career as a professional player, Rogerio Ceni holds the records as the most scoring goalkeeper in the history of football. He is known for his great free kicks and penalty kicks skills. Out of his 112 goals, 59 goals were scored from free kicks, and 53 goals were scored from penalty kicks. He spent his entire career with Sao Paulo, led the club to win three Brazilian league titles, two Copa Libertadores trophy, and one FIFA Club World Club trophy in 2005.

1. Jose Luis Chilavert

Similar to Higuita and Rogerio Ceni, Chilavert also scored a lot of goals. The Paraguay's goalkeeper is known as a wild, ill-tempered player, but also has good leadership skills. Until now, Chilavert is the only goalkeeper who scores a hat trick in a single match. This achievement was made when he played for Velez in a match against Ferro Carril Oeste, where all of the three goals were scored from penalty kicks.

In addition to his famous goal-scoring ability, Chilavert is also very good at protecting the goal. He was even three times selected as the best goalkeeper in the world by the IFFHS in the year 1995, 1997, and 1998.
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