Who Should be Manchester United's No. 1 Keeper Next Season?

will evansCorrespondent IJuly 7, 2009

LONDON - MARCH 01:  Goalkeeper Ben Foster of Manchester United (C) celebrates with the trophy after victory during the Carling Cup Final match between Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley Stadium on March 1, 2009 in London, England.  (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Next season we will likely see the last of Dutch legend Edwin Van Der Sar.

So, who should be United's number one next season?

Obviously, the first option is Van Der Sar, himself.

The man went on a record-breaking run between November and March, breaking English, British, and European records along the way.

However, the man is getting a bit older. That doesn't say much, as he was supposedly past his prime last season during which he set the records, but he likely won't be around for much longer.

So, should United look to the future and give some other players a chance to start, or use the Flying Dutchman one last season?


If they look to keep using Van Der Sar, then let's look at the pros.

1. Van Der Sar is one of the best five goalies in the world, and neither Kuszak nor Foster is in that elite bracket yet.

2. Using him as a starter would allow SAF to continue to nurture Foster and Kuszak in a manner that would help them to grow to be great players.

3. It wouldn't disturb the harmony between the back five. I don't know how much changing the keeper would affect this, but there is always the chance that replacing Van Der Sar would harm the chemistry that has been established on defense. \

As witnessed last season, a strong defense wins trophies.

Now, the next option is Ben Foster. Pros:

1. He is much younger, and having just put pen to paper on a new four-year deal, he appears to be SAF's preferred option. He also appears to be very loyal.

2. He is English. That may not seem like much of a pro, but with Platini, who knows.

3. He has very, very good reflexes. Many comparisons are made to Gigi Buffon. That may be a little extreme, but if Foster continues to grow, then maybe he can be that great.

4. Game time may accelerate his development. If given a proper season, then he could easily become one of the best goalies in the world with a combination of raw talent and experience (the one thing he lacks).

The next option would be Tomasz Kuszak. Pros:

1. Like Foster, age is on his side.

2. He regularly gets first-team football for the Poland national side, and a combination of this with first-team football for United could see him develop at an alarming rate.

3. While his reflexes aren't at the same level as Foster's, Kuszak is more of a Casillas-type keeper (extreme again, I know, but you get the point). His positioning is his strong point, and with practice and the opportunity, he could hone his reflexes.


So those are the three big choices. Should SAF stick with VDS and nurture the two younger keepers for another season, or should Foster or Kuszak take up the mantle as United's number one?

Of course, another option would be to go out and spend money on another keeper, but if so, who would be an ideal purchase?