A goalkeeper is, in many ways, the cornerstone of a team. It does not matter how proficient your strikers are because if you are leaky at the back, scoring goals won’t count for that much. As the last point of defence, goalkeepers often find themselves as either the hero or the villain.

We’ve decided to take a look at some of the best goalkeepers to have graced the Premier League – here are the top-five recorders of clean sheets.

Nigel Martyn – 137

Having recorded 137 clean sheets in 372 appearances in the Premier League, Nigel Martyn is fifth in the all-time list of clean sheets kept by a top-flight goalkeeper in England. Martyn was the first keeper to warrant a million-pound fee in the league’s history, playing for Crystal Palace, Everton and Leeds. He was called up and played 23 times for England and his clean sheet percentage in the league stands at 37%.

David Seaman – 141

David Seaman is a goalkeeping icon among English football fans, with his career spanning from 1981 to 2004. Only Peter Shilton earned more caps for England as a goalkeeper, with Seaman playing a total of 75 games for his country. His 141 Premier League caps were achieved in just 344 games and the former Arsenal and Manchester City keeper also registered four assists.

Mark Schwarzer – 151

With 151 clean sheets in 514 Premier League appearances, Mark Schwarzer ranks third in the league’s all-time list. He started his Premier League career at Middlesbrough in 1997 and went on to make 445 appearances for them. Schwarzer also played for Fulham, Chelsea and Leicester and is still the only non-British person to have made over 500 Premier League appearances

David James – 169

David James was known to make the occasional howler but the mere fact that he played so many games helps contribute to his place in this list. He played for five English clubs since his big break at Liverpool in the nineties, with Portsmouth his final club in England’s top flight. James recorded 169 clean sheets in 572 Premier League appearances.

Petr Cech – 202

Petr Cech tops the list for most Premier League clean sheets. The tall Cech notched 202 shut-outs in just 443 games. In 2005, he was awarded the inaugural Premier League Golden Glove after recording 24 clean sheets in a single season. That figure remains the record to this day. After his time at Chelsea, where he was pivotal to the success enjoyed by the club, he continued to excel at Arsenal.

Cech won the Golden Glove four times in all and is the only goalkeeper to have won it with two different clubs – Chelsea and Arsenal. Cech once had a record, at the time, of ten consecutive clean sheets until Edwin van der Sar recorded 14 in the 2008-09 season. His overall ratio of appearances-to-clean sheets in the Premier League is 46%. A true goalkeeping great.

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