This year the W-League has been blessed with a wealth of goalkeepers and this weekend four of the best are in action.

While it is usually the strikers that receive the love in football, this collection of custodians is enough to have anyone who loves the game excited.

Nadine Angerer:  The 35 year old Brisbane Roar goalkeeper is one of the greatest players to ever pull on the gloves.  Angerer has it all; height, athleticism, fast reaction time, incredible hands and the ability to read the game, honed by 20 years at the top.

Such is the importance of Angerer in a match that she became the first goalkeeper, male or female, to be voted FIFA Player of the Year after being instrumental in Germany's 2013 European Championship title.

A quad injury has meant that the she has not had played as many matches she would have liked but Brisbane would be very pleased to have her back for the finals, particularly if it goes to penalties.

Lydia Williams: A two time World Cup player and Asian Cup winner, Williams, like Angerer, has incredible athleticism.  Her long limbs combined with incredible anticipation and reaction time makes Williams one of the best shot stoppers in world football.

Although possessing a relatively inexperienced defence, it is no coincidence that Canberra had the top defensive record in the W-League.  In the past couple of seasons Williams has improved her ability to manage and organise a defensive line, paying big dividends in their last Championship season.

In fact if does go to penalties, with Angerer and Williams between the posts, for the first time we actually pity the penalty takers!

Brianna Davey: Injury and pregnancy thrust 18 year old Davey into the limelight and the intensity of international football.  That Davey has handled it all with aplomb says a lot for her temperament.

Davey is a goalkeeper that striker's fear (we know we would).  She control's her area well, is strong in the air, fearless at diving at feet and possesses the great shot stopping ability of Angerer and Williams.  That her teammates have complete faith in her is evident in how much Melbourne Victory use her to kick start attacks.

Casey Dumont: Although only 22 it seems as if the World Cup player, Asian Cup winner, two time W-League champion has been around forever.  Injury put a quick and brutal halt to Dumont's rise but in her return season, Sydney FC's new custodian has reminded us why she was picked to grace those big stages.

Positionally, Dumont is one of the best in the game.  Whether quickly coming out to sweep or clear, punching well or claiming from a corner or a shot, her game sense makes it seem like the ball is attracted to Dumont's sure hands.  Dumont is also more than a goalkeeper for Sydney FC, she is the launch pad with some of the best team goals this season starting with her accurate distribution.

It truly was a strong class of 'keepers so we couldn't finish without a word about them:

  • Melissa Barbieri helped Adelaide turn around their defensive woes;
  • Chantel Jones was a consistent performer for Perth Glory with a young and constantly interchanging defence;
  • Dimi Poulos came in as an injury replacement but was so influential the 27 year old kept her place even upon the return of the recruited No. 1;
  • Eliza Campbell was one of the Newcastle Jets' bright spots; and
  • Understudies Kate Stewart (Brisbane) and Sham Khamis (Sydney) never skipped a beat when they were required.

The Goalkeeper of the Year will be a hotly contested award this season!