Soccer America's Mike Woitalla recently interviewed Tim Hanley, the MLS's most experienced goalkeeper coach, for an interesting Q&A about Hanley's own experiences over his 22 years in the league, as well as the state of American goalkeeping as a whole.
Perhaps most notable, the former San Jose Earthquakes and Houston Dynamo coach provided a list of his top seven US goalkeepers of all-time, which includes five former or current MLSers: Kasey Keller, Brad Friedel, Tony Meola, Tim Howard and Marcus Hahnemann.
Hanley, who has spent this week with the Philadelphia Union staff at the 2018 MLS Combine also took an optimistic line on the nation's current goalkeeping landscape, in particular picking out David Bingham, Tyler Deric and Bill Hamid as "fantastic goalkeepers who could play in any league."
A couple interesting notes about Hanley's list:
- Keller beats out Friedel: Most US fans would probably rank this pair 1 and 2 in some order, although Friedel is probably more known internationally, between his long European career and his stellar play to help the US to the 2002 World Cup quarterfinals. However, Friedel only held the starting role in one World Cup, while Keller held it in two.
- Respect for the old guard: Although they may be unknown names to younger American fans, Bob Rigby and Arnie Mausser both had long fruitful careers in the NASL in the 1970s and early 1980s. Both also got looks internationally, with Mausser having an almost 10-year run with the US team.
- Meola over Howard?: Tim Howard is certainly the most known quantity to current MLS fans, and has built a bit of a cult following between his performances in Brazil at World Cup 2014 and his regular place with Everton FC in England for a decade. But Meola fought off incredible competition to win the US No. 1 job in the 1990 and 1994 World Cups, starting ahead of Keller in both tournaments.