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For most of the players on the pitch, a good pair of football boots and a sturdy set of shin pads are the only pieces of kit they need to worry about choosing. But for goalkeepers, there is another piece of gear that must be thought of: the gloves.
Goalkeeper gloves don’t just exist to help keep warm in the winter or to add an extra layer of style to a player’s kit – most importantly, they’re there to provide support to a goalkeeper’s best asset, their hands.
During a game, all a goalkeeper should need to think about is stopping the goal. They shouldn’t have to be thinking about protecting their hands. Luckily, that’s exactly what a good pair of goalkeeping gloves does: allows the player to focus on the task at hand without having to worry about potential injury.
When a goalkeeper raises their hands to try and stop a goal there needs to be cushioning, there needs to be a certain level of structure so their fingers don’t bend back, and there needs to be grip. What these elite gloves have in common is that they put the goalkeeper’s needs first – helping to clear any obstacles from a keeper’s mind while improving their goalkeeping abilities.
With all that in mind, here are 8 of the very best goalkeeper gloves currently available, alongside four budget alternatives.
Italian goalkeeper, and winner of the coveted Euros Golden Glove, Gianluigi Donnarumma wears these negative cut gloves, so you’ll be in safe hands with these spiked Predator Pro gloves from Adidas. The back of the hand is cradled with a flexible knit and the Demonskin 2.0 spikes get you the perfect traction when punching the ball. Plus, they look awesome.
For those who still want the futuristic look of the Predator Pro gloves but prefer a wrist strap to feel secure, the Ultimate edition is for you. There’s a reason why German number one Manuel Neuer wears these negative cut gloves as he stands guard for Bayern Munich. The wrist and finger reinforcements are removable so you can control the level of support you receive from the glove.
If you don’t fancy paying over £100, these negative cut grippy gloves are the perfect alternative. The shocking pink colour is just like that of the elite gloves, and so are the Demonskin 2.0 elements that adorn the top. Thick URG 3.0 foam helps protect your palms when stopping those all-important shots.
Champions League goalkeeper of the tournament Eduardo Mendy wears these gloves. The Chelsea shot-stopper chooses these gloves week in, week out in the Premier League too which is a vote of confidence. These gloves have an easy slip-on style as well as a strap to secure the wrists. The glove body is made from structured airprene which is the same stuff they use on support braces. A special offer from Sports Direct knocks over £50.00 from the original price.
These gloves from UhlSport use patented AbsolutGrip which gives an outstanding grip in all weather conditions. The gloves are made from neoprene which has for a long time been used to make wetsuits, so you can imagine that snug, protective feel.
These classic-cut gloves are made from soft latex and are the best choice for comfort. They are totally padded for shock absorption and the embossed rebound zone is designed to help punch balls away.
Tottenham and France’s top goalkeeper Hugo Lloris wears these Reusch Guardian gloves. These gloves wear their technology on their sleeve and are perfect for all weather conditions. The black specks are high resistance focused latex and the blue specks are special wet weather latex. They come with removable Ortho-Tec spines to stop your fingers from bending too far backwards.
These elite negative cut gloves use Reusch’s ergonomic support system which combines a snug fit with direct control of the ball. They have ventilation channels so your hands don’t get too sweaty and a rolled thumb with a 3D thumb crotch. The back is made from lightweight latex to aid that streamlined feel.
This glove uses an Expanse cut which sits like a flat palm but slightly wraps around the thumb for increased ball control. It uses a standard elastic full wrist strap and lightweight PVC for increased power on punches.
Top goalkeepers like Thibaut Courtois and Alisson Becker like wearing Nike Vapor Grip3 gloves.
Thanks to the All Conditions Control, they’re designed to be worn in wet and dry conditions which is ideal. They have an adjustable strap with foam cushioning which helps the gloves feel secure.
The Grip3 technology wraps around the thumb, forefinger and little finger for a secure grip. The foam cushioning absorbs impact and means you don’t have to shy from difficult or tough saves.
At less than £20, these are a great budget alternative to the Grip3. The palms on these gloves are cushioned with plush foam which helps protect your hands from powerful shots, while the smooth surface gives you grip come rain or shine.