Whenever there are discussions about the best goalkeepers in the world, Italian safe hands, Gianluigi Buffon, Peter Cech, and a couple of names pop up.
A couple of names from Africa come up, too; the likes of Thomas N’Kono, Joseph-Antoine Bell, Nigerian Vincent Enyeama, and some others are honorable mentions.
While many of them have retired, a new generation of goalkeepers is shining in Europe, and a couple of African goalkeepers are part of them.
Many African players have shone in all the major football leagues, and African goalkeepers have not been left out as they also stood up to be counted. The men between the sticks stood out with their scintillating performances in this past year.
In 2023, the following African goalkeepers should be reckoned with based on their antecedents from last year.
Here’s our list of the best Africa goalkeepers in the world at the moment.
1. Edouard Mendy
- Country: Senegal
- Club: Chelsea
Senegal’s goalkeeper is number one in Africa based on his profile before 2022, being a part of a successful 2021 for Chelsea.
His Individual awards include the UEFA Champions League Squad of the Season: 2020–2021, UEFA Champions League Goalkeeper of the Season: 2020–2021, The Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper: 2021, Africa Cup of Nations Best Goalkeeper: 2021, and Africa Cup of Nations Team of the Tournament: 2021.
He started the year 2022 as an AFCON winner with Senegal, but his performances have been inconsistent for both club and country.
The same was at the World Cup in Qatar, where he conceded seven goals in four games.
Before the Mundial, he lost his number one shirt to Kepa Arrizabalaga at Chelsea, and such, it is an anxious wait to see how 2023 will be for the Senegalese.
2. Yassine Bounou
- Country: Morocco
- Club: Sevilla
In terms of performances, the Sevilla 31-year-old shot-stopper is Africa’s best goalkeeper not only with his 2022 World Cup numbers but also because of his outings at the club level.
Bounou went to the World Cup in Qatar and went to the semi-final without conceding to an opposition player.
His only goal was an own goal in the third group stage game against Canada.
In total, he conceded 3 goals in seven world cup games, with two of them coming in the 2-1 loss to Croatia in the third-place match. A lot will definitely be expected in 2023 from the Moroccan.
Yassine is also one of the finest goalkeepers in La Liga, and is renowned for his assured displays in goal and sharp reflexes
3. André Onana
- Country: Cameroon
- Club: Inter
André Onana has courted controversy in the last couple of months, from coming back from a drug abuse ban to a World Cup fiasco and finally retiring untimely from the national team.
Since he made his debut for Cameroon in 2016, Onana made 32 appearances for the Indomitable Lions.
Nevertheless, Onana is one of Africa’s top goalkeepers in his generation.
His impressive display at Ajax secured him a move to Inter Milan, and right now André Onana is arguably the best African goalkeeper in Europe.
After leaving the Cameroonian camp at the World Cup in Qatar abruptly, he announced his retirement from the national team.
2023 will be interesting for Onana as he concentrates on club football.
4. Mohammed El Shenawy
- Country: Egypt
- Club: Al Ahly.
El Shenawy, at 34, may be moving towards the end of his career, but maybe he’s moving towards another interesting twist in his football journey.
The Egyptian international may not be able to attract interest from abroad, but maybe he can attract their attention as the Championship Of African Nations gets underway in Algeria in January 2023.
5. Dennis Onyango
- Country: Uganda
- Club: Mamelodi Sundowns
Another veteran goalkeeper who has not done it outside the shores of Africa but is still considered a big goalkeeping figure.
Despite being 37, Onyango still does it in the South African league and will still do the same when the CAF Champions League starts in 2023.
He garnered 82 caps with Uganda and captained them until his international retirement in 2021.
Dennis Onyango is known for his penalty-saving abilities and his reaction in one-on-one situations.
- Francis Uzoho – Nigeria
- Raïs M’Bolhi – Algeria
- Jojo Wollacott – Ghana
- Moez Ben Cherifia – Tunisia
- Sylvain Gbohouo – Côte d’Ivoire
- Alfred Gomis – Senegal