Ten outfield players who played as goalkeepers

Enzo Perez‘s appearance in goal for River Plate in midweek made a lot of headlines.

Despite having 20 coronavirus cases and only 11 players available, River were forced to fulfil their Copa Libertadores commitments against Santa Fe on Thursday. They had no available goalkeepers remaining in their squad, so the midfielder had to play between the sticks.

Perez managed to get through the game conceding just once, River picked up a memorable 2-1 win, and Perez earned the man of the match award.

But the midfielder isn’t the first outfield player to play in goal, and we’ve taken a look at some other examples of this happening.

Kyle Walker

As Manchester City took on Atalanta away from home in the 2019/20 Champions League group phase, Pep Guardiola found himself in need of an emergency goalkeeper. Ederson was taken off at half time and Claudio Bravo got himself sent off, meaning the English defender had 10 minutes plus stoppage time between the posts, managing to save a freekick and keep a clean sheet in a 1-1 draw.

Dani Alves

The former Barcelona and Sevilla star had a spell between the posts for Paris Saint-Germain against Sochaux in 2018. His time there lasted just a matter of seconds though, after Kevin Trapp‘s last-minute red card.

Hugo Almeida

Playing for AEK Athens in 2017, Almeida played the last few minutes of a semi-final against Olympiacos in goal. They progressed to the final with a 2-2 aggregate draw.

Harry Kane

One of the Tottenham forward’s most iconic moments came in the Europa League, going in goal late on against Asteras. The Englishman conceded in rather comical fashion, highlighting just how good goalkeepers are at the so-called simple things.

Rodrigo Palacio

The World Cup finalist went in goal with a quarter of an hour to play of Inter‘s 2-0 Coppa Italia win over Hellas Verona in 2012, keeping a clean sheet.

Rio Ferdinand

Back in 2008, the defender had to go in goal after Tomasz Kuszczak had been sent off, having previously replaced Edwin van der Sar. He conceded a penalty, which was the game’s only goal.

John O’Shea

The Irishman was known for his versatility, but playing in goal took that to another level. O’Shea stepped in after Van der Sar went off with a broken nose, managing a clean sheet in a 4-0 win.

John Terry

In 2006, Chelsea saw two goalkeepers go off injures with scares. Petr Cech was first, with his collision with Stephen Hunt leading to him playing with a helmet-like piece of kit for the rest of his career, and Carlo Cudicini then went off later having been knocked unconscious. Terry put on the gloves and Chelsea won 1-0.

Niall Quinn

All the way back in 1991, the Irish forward stepped in after he had scored in the game as Tony Coton was dismissed. With experience in Gaelic football – a sport many claim was his real strength – Quinn stopped a penalty.


Even the great Pele has stepped in between the posts as Santos beat Gremio 4-3. He scored a hat-trick in the same game.

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