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Goalkeeper Essentials: What’s in a full goalkeeper kit?

One of the most important roles on the pitch, becoming a great goalkeeper takes hours of practice, an immense amount of effort and a fair amount of natural talent. Without you and your hard work, all it takes is one good opposing striker and the game is all but over. In such a high-pressure position, making sure you have everything you need to stay on top-form from match to match is very important.

Whether you’re new to the role and aren’t sure what goalkeeper essentials you need to get your hands on, or your child has shown an interest in saving rather than scoring and needs a junior goalkeeper kit to get started, you’re in the right place. Here at Avec Sport, our experts have put together a handy goalkeeper equipment list to help make sure you have everything you need when you stand in front of that goal for the first time. 

Why is the goalkeeper kit different?

If you’re unfamiliar with the specifics of the goalkeeper position and don’t know what is included in a full goalkeeper kit, you might be wondering why it's any different from the other players on the pitch at all, after all, they are on the same team aren’t they? Well, yes, the goalkeeper must work in tandem with their teammates in order to be as effective as possible, but, this coordination doesn't extend to their kits for three main reasons:

  1. Differentiated colours - One thing you might have noticed from watching football matches at any level is that the goalkeeper always wears a different colour to the other members of their team. This is done to help officials and other players quickly differentiate between goalkeepers and everyone else on the pitch. For this reason, goalkeeper kits are regularly designed in vibrant, eye-catching colours that can allow them to be identified within a split second - exactly the amount of time a player needs to make a decision on whether to pass, receive or try to score a goal.

  2. Specialist goalkeeper essentials - As the only players on the pitch who can legally come into contact with the ball using their hands, it’s no surprise that goalkeepers require additional equipment to help them perform their role as safely and effectively as possible. This is most often seen in the inclusion of gloves in every list of goalkeeper essentials, but there are also some other additions such as glove towels, water bottles and finger tape which we’ll go into in the goalkeeper equipment list section of this blog post.

  3. Safety considerations - Classified as a contact sport, players in every position on the pitch are at risk of injury, but this is taken to another level for goalkeepers. Regularly required to catch high-speed balls, hit the ground to make difficult saves and even absorb stray kicks while diving towards an attacker’s feet, goalkeepers are in the highest-impact position on the field and therefore need some extra protection. This usually comes in the form of a padded goalkeeper kit, though some players may also opt to take this to another level with goalkeeper protective gear such as a helmet and knee pads.

Do goalkeeper kits have padding?

As you might have already guessed, the answer to this question is yes, goalkeeper kits often have built-in padding to improve player safety. For example, the Fusion Goalkeeper Jersey from Avec Sport features additional supportive padding on the elbows and forearm area, helping to minimise scratches and scrapes sustained from turf burns while simultaneously cushioning hard falls. In-line with popular player choices, our padded jersey should keep you safe during practices and matches but, if you’re playing on rougher terrain than a standard grass pitch, you might also prefer to invest in some additional protective measures such as knee pads and more substantial hard-shelled elbow guards.

While many players prefer the extra layer of protection that a padded goalkeeper kit offers, they are more a matter of preference rather than regulation. In most leagues, the only enforced protective measure for any player on the pitch are shin guards, so goalkeepers are usually free to make their own choice between a padded jersey and a regular playing jersey (long-sleeved or otherwise). To ensure you’re adhering to the specific safety regulations implemented in your league, ask your coach, manager or league organiser for clarification.

What equipment do you need to be a goalkeeper?

 

Now that we’ve gone over what makes a goalkeeper kit different from those for other players on the field, it’s time to make sure you have everything you need for your next session with our handy goalkeeper equipment list. 

  • Standard football essentials - Before you reach for the specialist goalkeeper essentials, you’ll first need to stock up on your regular playing gear. This includes football boots, shorts, knee-high socks and shin guards, but you might also choose to invest in some extra training gear such as rain jackets, hoodies and track pants.

  • Goalkeeper gloves - Unsurprisingly, goalkeeper gloves are the most important piece of equipment in your kit bag. Designed to improve grip to stop the ball from slipping through your fingers while protecting your palms and fingers from abrasions, high-quality goalkeeper gloves are an essential. If you’re looking to spend a little more on your pair, we recommend looking out for fingersave gloves which help to give your fingers an extra layer of strength that stops them from being bent backwards on impact. Finger tape is another way of achieving this effect, but can be more expensive in the long run as you repeatedly replenish the supply.

  • Goalkeeper trousers - Not strictly-speaking among the list of goalkeeper essentials that everyone from amateur to professional should have in their possession, goalkeeper trousers offer a comfortable alternative to those who prefer a little extra protection when defending the goal. Our comfortable and non-restrictive track pants offer a good option, but should only be worn during training sessions.

  • Padded goalkeeper jersey - The most popular choice of goalkeeper protective gear, a padded football jersey offers players an extra layer of protection as well as a confidence boost. As a goalkeeper, your priority should always be to save the goal, which regularly requires dramatic dives to the ground. Any lingering concerns about falling hard and sustaining injuries will automatically cause hesitations which could cost the match but, with the feeling of safety that a padded goalkeeper kit provides, these hesitations are eliminated.

  • Sports water bottle and glove towel - Not always thought of as part of regular goalkeeper essentials, a full sports water bottle and glove towel set is something we would recommend is kept close during practice sessions and on match day. With these, goalkeepers can wash any clinging grass or dirt from their gloves through the match, ensuring they remain as grippy as possible.

Create your personalised goalkeeper kit at Avec Sport

At Avec Sport, we specialise in designing, comfortable, high-quality goalkeeper kits that last season after season. Whether you’re searching for a padded goalkeeper jersey for yourself, or are looking for a safe junior goalkeeper kit for your young football player, find them for a reasonable price online at Avec. All of our jerseys can also be customised to display your club crest, name or initials and any sponsor logos, so you can feel professional and ready to play your best.