Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet continued his fine form last night as he kept his 11th clean sheet of the season in the 1-0 away win at Swansea City in the Premier League and many fans believe that the Belgian stopper is the best goalkeeper in the league at the moment, but what do the statistics say?
Well before we look at the comparisons between Mignolet and some of the league’s finest shot-stoppers, it’s worth noting that Mignolet and his Liverpool teammates kept their sixth straight clean sheet away from home in the league, equalling a record going back 43 years to Bill Shankly’s side of 1971/72.
That impressive run of form has seen Liverpool fly up the table and they are currently just two points behind fourth-placed Manchester United, who they face in a key clash on Sunday.
The Reds have not lost in the league since mid-December, when they were defeated 3-0 by United and Brendan Rodgers’ side boast the best recent form in the league.
Confidence is clearly flowing through the team and that has led to improved performances. Simon Mignolet is evidence of that as he looked out of sorts and out of favour when Rodgers said he had dropped the Belgian “indefinitely” back in December.
But he has turned things around and looks back to his best. Some are now suggesting that Mignolet is the Premier League’s best goalkeeper at the moment but how does he compare to some of the league’s finest ‘keepers?
Mignolet has kept an impressive 11 clean sheets so far this season, a number only bettered by Southampton’s Fraser Forster.
Forster has been in fine form throughout the season as he and his Saints teammates have conceded the fewest goals in the Premier League, and Forster is averaging almost three saves per every goal conceded – the best record in the top flight.
Mignolet is averaging just 1.9 saves per goal, which is the same number as Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris, but less than David De Gea, Joe Hart and Thibaut Courtois.
Lloris is averaging more than three saves per game, more than any of the other five ‘keepers looked at above, and has also made more saves inside the penalty area with 67 this season.
So although his performances of late have been mighty impressive, Liverpool’s Mignolet is not statistically the best goalkeeper in the Premier League.
He will go up against David De Gea on Sunday as two of the league’s top stoppers do battle at Anfield with both looking to keep another clean sheet in the race for Champions League football.