Friday, December 14, 2007

1. Edwin Van der Sar

keys: manchester united | Edwin Van der Sar | Goalkeeper | Edwin Van der Sar profile | Edwin Van der Sar photos pictures wallpapers

Edwin Van der Sar

Edwin Van der Sar

Edwin Van der Sar

Edwin Van der Sar

Edwin Van der Sar

Birthdate: 29 Oct 1970
Birthplace: Voorhout, Holland
Position: Goalkeeper
Appearances: 117
Goals: 0
Joined United: 01 Jun 2005
United Debut: 09 Aug 2005 v Debreceni VSC (H)
International Holland

The No.1 slot at United has had its fair share of pretenders since Peter Schmeichel vacated his throne in 1999, but the willowy Dutchman has easily come closest to filling the great Dane’s sizeable gloves.

Although the two differ in style – Schmeichel was, of course, famed for furiously bellowing at his back four as well as his brilliant saves - Edwin’s experience and calm assurance has undoubtedly been a key component in regaining the Premiership crown from Chelsea in his second season at the club.

Twelve clean sheets in the league in what became, towards the end of the season, an ever-changing

back four, is an impressive feat. It saw him make the 2007 Premiership Team of the Year, as voted for by his fellow professionals. Most notably among them was Chelsea stopper Petr Cech, who expressed deep admiration for the former Ajax and Fulham keeper’s performances in 2006/07.

His late penalty save from Darius Vassell against Manchester City at Eastlands was a defining moment, a veritable title-clinching stop.

Signed for an undisclosed signing from Fulham in the summer of 2005, van der Sar has brought all the wisdom and know-how between the sticks that you would expect to find from a goalkeeper that is his nation’s most-capped player and a former UEFA Cup and Champions League winner with his former club Ajax in the earlier nineties.

A UEFA Cup and Champions League winner with the Dutch club in 1992 and 1995, he also won four league titles and three domestic cups with the Amsterdam outfit, before spending two seasons in Serie A with Juventus.

With the arrival of Gianlugi Buffon at the Stadio delle Alpi threatening his first-team chances, he made a £5 million switch to Fulham in 2001 at the outset of the Londoners’ Premiership adventure, but after four seasons at Craven

Cottage United came knocking.

Edwin’s move to Manchester was given the thumbs up by Schmeichel and in his first season at OT he started all but five of United’s 56 games, keeping an impressive 24 clean sheets, including five on the spin from his debut.

Van der Sar’s solid presence, agility and reliability have been a major plus to United this term, while his quick and inventive distribution aid the team’s speedy attacking style. Age may not be on his side, but experience counts, and he will be hoping to add to his Carling Cup and Premiership winners’ medals.


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