Heading into the last round of matches in the English Premier League, four goalkeepers have a chance of winning the Golden Glove for the most clean sheets.
Liverpool’s Simon Mignolet, Swansea’s Lukasz Fabianski, Manchester City’s Joe Hart and Southampton’s Fraser Forster are all joint top on 13 clean sheets.
It could yet be that the award is shared four ways, as there is no tie-breaker to win the award outright if more than one keeper is joint top at the end of the season.
The injured Forster will not play on Sunday, so can only now take a share. Fabianski plays away at Crystal Palace, Hart is at home to Southampton while Mignolet is away to Stoke.
Chelsea’s number one Thibaut Courtois would have been be guaranteed at least a share with clean sheets against West Brom on last night but an 8th minute goal by Burundi-Born Englishman Saido Berahino restricted him to 12 clean sheets this season. The Belgian will miss out in the equation since it will be Petre Cech bidding farewell to Stamford Bridge on Sunday after 11 years at the club.
There has been some confusion over the number by Mignolet’s name, as he replaced the injury Brad Jones in the 16th minute of the 1-0 win at Burnley on Dec. 26. But official clean sheets, unlike in fantasy games, are only awarded for players who play the full game — as such Mignolet does not qualify.
The Golden Glove has only once been shared since it was first awarded in 2004-05, when Cech and Arsenal’s Wojciech Szczesny were level on 16 clean sheets last season.
This season is also certain of being the lowest number required to win, with last season’s total of 16 previously holding that record.
Cech, Hart and Pepe Reina (Liverpool) have the most wins with three each, while Cech (2004-05) and Man United’s Edwin van der Sar (2008-09) have the highest number in one season with 21.
No player outside the Premier League elite of Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City and Manchester United has ever won the Golden Glove.