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6 Great Goalkeeper Performances in the Champions League History

Thibaut Courtois displayed a masterclass in goaltending to help Real Madrid defeat Liverpool and win the Champions League in 2022.

Breaking a record established in 2003/04, the Belgian produced nine saves to shut out Liverpool in a remarkable individual effort that revived his team and helped them win the championship for the 14th time.

Courtois was really invincible at the Stade de France. It was never too much to ask of him as he raced about his box throughout the evening, claiming crosses, closing off angles, and even stretching to deflect shots away from his goal.

While some may argue that Liverpool should have done better with their finishing, there’s only so much you can do when every shot on goal is collected or swatted away with seeming ease by the man between the stops.

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Goalkeeper performances like these are what keep clubs alive in the biggest games on the football calendar, but they’re nearly always missed, something goalkeepers have become used to.

So, in an effort to break the cycle of only seeing weak goalie performances, I’ve compiled a list of some of the best efforts between the sticks in Champions League history, after Courtois’ heroics in 2022 final.

1. Petr Cech vs Bayern Munich (2012)

Cech continued his unworldly form into the Champions League final, important for Chelsea.

The 1-1 draw led to penalties when Chelsea’s renowned goalkeeper stopped Arjen Robben’s penalty. He saved two penalties to help his team win the Champions League.

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2. Gianluigi Buffon vs AC Milan (2003)

Buffon’s 2003 all-Italian final performance was outstanding.

In a 120-minute bore-draw final, Buffon kept the Rossoneri at bay with superb performance, carrying Juve as far as he could before succumbing to penalties.

3. Petr Cech vs Barcelona (2012)

It appears goalkeepers adore playing Barcelona. Cech was superhuman in Chelsea’s 2012 European campaign.

With Chelsea down to 10 men, Cech was in great form to hold Barcelona to two goals, which paid off when Fernando Torres’ late strike for 2-2 propelled Chelsea to the final.

4. Joe Hart vs Barcelona (2015)

L’Equipe called Hart’s performance one of the best in Champions League history.

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The England goalkeeper did all he could to help City advance. He made three one-on-one saves against Messi, Neymar, and Luis Suarez.

5. Keylor Navas vs Bayern Munich (2021)

In the next round, Navas beat Bayern Munich.

Navas made 10 saves to help PSG win 3-2 in Germany and advance to the quarterfinals. Unsung hero.

6. Keylor Navas vs Barcelona (2021)

Earning Man of the Match for a genuinely unbelievable final 16 showing at the Parc des Princes, Navas stopped a penalty shot from Messi and kept out a further 10 attempts on goal against Barcelona.

Long range, short range, Navas has it all covered. It left La Blaugrana absolutely empty of ideas as they tumbled out of the tournament.

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