Jordan Pickford might be injured with the World Cup on the horizon, but England shouldn’t panic as they have two top keepers waiting in the ranks.
Nick Pope and Aaron Ramsdale are the two obvious contenders for the top spot, with Pickford on the sidelines.
The Three Lions face Italy and Germany in the last international break before the World Cup.
But who should be Gareth Southgate’s undisputed number two and most likely to challenge the Everton man based on the stats?
Well, talkSPORT.com decided to take a look…
Nick Pope – eight selections
Pope was one of the rookies of the season.
The new Newcastle goalkeeper cost just £10m and has already made several top saves, and at 6ft 3in he dominates his box.
There were question marks over his ability to play at the back while at Burnley, but under Eddie Howe he is adapting to a new style of play which should help his chances in England as no one can question his shooting stoppage.
So far this year, the 30-year-old has made 30 saves in the top flight, including August’s Premier League Save of the Month against Brighton.
He also made several exceptional saves in the Toon’s 3-3 draw against Manchester City.
He kept a clean sheet in the first seven games and conceded seven goals.
The former Charlton Athletic man has also prevented 1.5 goals and has an 81.1% save percentage.
Pope has made ten sweeping moves in the Premier League, which is significant due to England’s preference for playing a high line.
His passing stats are also decent, and you can bet Southgate will have a close eye on those.
The former Burnley man attempted 130 passes, long and short, in which he completed 52%, including 30 accurate long balls, and an average of 18.57 passes per game.
So Pope performs well in all aspects of the game, but how does he compare to Ramsdale?
Aaron Ramsdale – three caps
Ramsdale’s rise at Arsenal over the past year has been fantastic.
The 24-year-old started last season behind Bernd Leno but has now forced the German out of the club.
Mikel Arteta has complete faith in Ramsdale, and time is on his side to become England goalkeeper for most of his career.
But should he be ahead of Pope in the pecking order?
So far this year, the former Sheffield United man has made 13 saves in the Premier League.
He had no unforced errors leading to a goal but scored -1.4 on prevented goals and boasts a 65% save percentage.
Like Pope, Ramsdale has kept three of seven clean sheets and conceded seven goals.
But he only made three sweeping actions, which could count against him.
However, his success stats are better than Pope’s.
Ramsdale attempted 175 passes, long and short, in which he completed 61%, including 38 accurate long balls, and averaged 25 passes per game.
Pope v Ramsdale: Premier League 2022/23 stats
- Backup: 30
- Clean sheets: Three
- Goals conceded: Seven
- Goals prevented: 1.5
- Savings percentage: 81.1%
- Swipe actions: ten
- Success: 52%
- Passes per game: 18.57
- Backups: 13
- Clean sheets: Three
- Goals conceded: Seven
- Goals prevented: -1.4
- Savings percentage: 65%
- Swipe Actions: Three
- Success: 61%
- Passes per game: 25
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Pope and Ramsdale: What was said?
David Seaman told talkSPORT: “England’s number one is definitely Jordan Pickford, there’s no doubt about it. He’s been brilliant for England, you can’t question that.
“But he is absent for these two games. I think Nick and Aaron will have one game each.
“For me, Aaron is number two. Nick is doing very well at Newcastle. From what I see, he has a lot to do at Newcastle, but it’s different with Aaron.
“Arsenal are top of the league; he doesn’t have much to do, but it’s more like playing in an international match, where you don’t have much to do and all of a sudden you’re called upon to be your best.
So Seaman thinks it should be Ramsdale but he’s arguably too close to call with Pope brilliant to stop shots and get off his line and Ramsdale better on the ball.
Either way, Southgate will have a tough choice to make.
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