Goalkeeping 101 : Manuel Neuer’s Fundamental Error Analyzed


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Germany World Cup goalkeeper MANUEL NEUER, the expensive as well as high-profile transfer costing 18.0 million Euros from Schalke 04 Gelsenkirchen this summer, gifted SV Hamburg an early goal after just six minutes as Bayern Munich lost 2-1 in the semi-final of the exhibition Liga Total Cup in Mainz.
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As is well-known, whenever the goalkeeper comes off his line he must be sure to either catch cleanly or punch the ball effectively away to safety — failure to do so can and oftentimes does have disastrous consequences for the team.

Goalkeepers are taught it is imperative to both take the most direct route to the ball as well as catch the ball at the highest possible point in the air. The reasoning behind the ‘direct route’ theory is actually rather simple. Not taking such a path actually does nothing but invite attackers to cut in front of the goalkeeper and make contact with the ball first.

Bayern Munich goalkeeper MANUEL NEUER made a major fundamental error in dealing with a ball into the box early into the Liga Total Cup match with SV Hamburg and, in the end, his team paid a terrible price. The trained eye can easily see the clear and present danger. Instead of coming on an immediate, straight-forward angle to the ball, Neuer’s first move is actually sideways to his left.

One can also easily see that Neuer, at the last moment, realizes his mistake and attempts to hurl his body back over to his right. Albeit too late, however, as the Bayern Munich goalkeeper winds up on his butt and the ball, not surprisingly, ends up in the back of the net via 19-year-old South Korea international striker HEUNG-MIN SON.

The ball delivered by Germany international defender DENNIS AOGO of SV Hamburg was actually excellent in quality. Always hard to deal with, a low and driven cross with a nasty bend curling away from the goalkeeper. But still, the fundamentals are and will forever remain the fundamentals.

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