For the past 90 years, Serie A has been one of the top professional league based competitions held for football clubs located at the top of the Italian football league system.
The 20 participating teams battle for glory and the winner is awarded the prestigious Scudetto and the Coppa Campioni d’Italia. The most ever Serie A Scudetto’s is in the hands of the Old Lady with 36 under their belt.
Since the 1929-30 season, the competition has witnessed the growth and rise of some of the greatest football legends.
Speaking of the greatest players of all time, the competition has witnessed some of the very first of its kind. Right from an outstanding finish to a magnificent flying shoot-stop, the competition has seen it all. Regardless of the names present in the competition, the goalkeepers have been fearless and mostly all of them carry Italian credentials.
Italians have had a hold in Serie A with some of the legendary goalkeepers of the sport being Italians. They rightfully did justice to their job by giving exceptional performances, consistently.
The league has reached its peak through the 90s and the Italian teams have produced goalies that will and always have had a huge impact in Serie A’s history.
With respect to their performances, and their skills with the gloves, here are the top five Italian goalkeepers of all-time in Serie A.
5. Angelo Peruzzi
Angelo has spent his entire professional football career playing in Serie A. The 51-year-old started his journey in 1986 with Roma, but he achieved the most success with his stint with Juventus from 1991 to 1999.
Peruzzi made an astonishing 478 appearances in Serie A and was the first-ever goalkeeper to win the Serie A Goalkeeper of the Year award, back when it was introduced in 1997. Ever since then, he has held the award thrice.
He played a crucial role in Italy’s World Cup Triumph back in 2006. He’s been adjudged as one of the greatest goalkeepers ever to have played the sport. He has had success more than any other player could ever dream about.
Not only that, but he has also won the Coppa Italia with Lazio in 2004, which was his second after previously winning it with Juventus in 1995.
The three-time Scudetto winner, played a huge part in the 1996 Champions League victory, saving 2 penalties in a crucial shoot-out against Ajax. In the 1999-2000 season, he stayed in Inter and then moved to Lazio, where he later retired, back in 2007.
4. Sebastiano Rossi
AC Milan has produced some of the world’s top goalkeepers. Rossi was one of those who were a part of AC Milan’s incredible generation from the 90s.
Rossi’s skills were often overlooked and his role was viewed as one of the easiest in football courtesy of several big names already being present at the club. However, nothing ever came in his way from achieving the aim he always had in his mind.
With his tag of Rossoneri number one for six seasons, he provided his club with a reliable source of consistent performances every game. He, with his gloves, gave his all on-field and did a commendable job at saving goals.
Out of a staggering 346 Serie A games, he played more than 90% of games for AC Milan. He was an inspiration for one too many with his shoot-stopping abilities and was set as an example for several budding goalkeepers.
The star keeper is a five-time Serie A winner with Milan, as well as has a Champions League title under his belt from back in 1994.
Rossi once mentioned in an old interview that conceding a goal, to him, was “like having my hand cut off, and every time I retrieved the ball from the back of the net it was like dying.”
3. Dino Zoff
Dino Zoff is the oldest man ever to have won the World Cup when he led the strong Italy side to victory in 1982 with a staggering 40 years.
The Italian goalkeeper also lifted the European Championship title with the national team, on home turf in 1968. The titles marked the occasion as the crowning moment of a sensational career.
Playing for the Old Lady, the 76-year old goalie has won the Serie A six times and added 2 Coppa Italia in the bag with one UEFA Cup win to his trophy collection.
In entirety, he has played as many as 642 games in Serie A. He started his professional career early, with Udinese and Mantova. However, he established his best game during his stint with Napoli and Juventus, where he has had the most memorable moments with the gloves.
In his eventful career, Zoff holds the record for the most saves (67) in World Cup tournaments since 1966. No other goalkeeper has ever come close to Zoff’s heroics.
In 1973, for the Ballon d’Or, he was ruled as the second in life for the prestigious award.
However, from 1972 to 1974 he broke the record for the longest period without conceding a goal in the international sector that was a mind-blowing 1142 minutes.
2. Walter Zenga
The 61-year-old is the former long-time goalkeeper for the Italian national team and Inter Milan and was an inspiration to many young goalkeepers.
The 6 ft tall goalkeeper was a tough nut to go past when it came to his skills with the gloves.
A three-time winner of the IFFHS World’s Best Goalkeeper Award, Zenga is regarded by pundits as one of the best goalkeepers of all time. In 2013, he was voted the eighth-best goalkeeper of the past quarter-century by IFFHS.
The Italian has won a Serie A title (1988-89), an Italian Super Cup (1989) and two UEFA Cups in 1991 & 1994 respectively. Back in 1990, he was also awarded as the UEFA Goalkeeper of the Year.
In all, he has played a total of 473 matches for Inter Milan before retiring and stayed on the field for a whopping 40,000+ minutes. In Serie A, he has played 328 matches for Inter Milan while playing the remaining 41 games for UC Sampdoria. He has also been a former Italian manager and former player who last managed Serie A club CaCaCagliari
1. Francesco Toldo
The 49-year-old is an Italian retired footballer who played as a goalkeeper. Toldo is regarded by pundits as one of the greatest goalkeepers of his generation.
In a professional career that spanned for two full decades, he mainly represented Fiorentina and Inter Milan, winning a total of 15 trophies for both.
The Italian was a part of ACF Fiorentina back in 1993 before joining Inter Milan in 2001. In Serie A, Toldo played 336 matches for Fiorentina before playing 233 matches for Inter Milan. He stayed for a whopping 33,000+ minutes on the field with his excellence, mesmerising all his fans.
For the Italy national team, Toldo took part in five international competitions, being a starter in UEFA Euro 2000, where he helped Italy reach the final. He’s been astonishing with his goalkeeping skills and it was a difficult task to get past him at any point of the game.
For Fiorentina, he has a Serie B title, two Copa Italia’s and a Supercoppa Italiana. Meanwhile, for Inter Milan, he has 5 Serie A titles, 3 Coppa Italia, 3 Supercoppa Italiana, and a UEFA Champions League title in 2009-10. He has had a remarkable career and he has been one of a kind. Undoubtedly, one of the best keepers in the whole world.