The 13 players with the most goal-line clearances in Premier League history

Goal-line clearances are as good as a goal. Defenders will pump their fists over winning a throw-in these days, but in The Good Old Days™ goal-line clearances were about the only defensive action you were allowed to get excited about.

We’ve taken a look at the data to see which players have made the most goal-saving clearances, dragging their team out of the deep, deep sh*t.

You know when you read these kinds of articles and they’re like you WON’T BELIEVE number 7! Nah, this ain’t like that. This list is pleasingly exactly who the f*ck you think it’s gonna be. Now let’s celebrate these spiritually Barclays’ human walls.

=6. Gary Cahill: 10

He could do it all, could Cahill. Good on the ball, tall, strong, quick for a centre-back, and not scared to get amongst it.

As well as protecting the back of the net with his life, Cahill once dominated a sack race against the other dads at his kids’ sports day. You cannot take the competitive athlete out of these blokes.

=6. Lewis Dunk: 10

Dunk might be a Brighton legend, but he grew up supporting the Chels. Got a dog called Didier and everything. He idolised John Terry, apparently. That pleases us — a centre-back who grew up idolising a centre-back.

Dunky still has a few years left in the tank, and Brighton have been a bit dodgy recently — wouldn’t count on the big fella staying on 10.

=6. Richard Dunne: 10

Dickie Dunne has scored as many Premier League own goals as he has made goal-line clearances.

If you know anything about the superposition of waves, you’ll know that if these two stats ever met each other, they’d cancel each other out and form an island of stillness.

Jamie Carragher of Liverpool scored 7 own goals in the Premier League - only Richard Dunne scored more

TRY A QUIZ: Can you name every player to have scored 5+ own goals in the Premier League?

=6. Phil Jagielka: 10

Jagielka is the first of two men from Sale on this list, and the first of two Englishman with a Polish surname here too.

This proves our theory that being from Sale and of Polish descent provides an aspiring footballer with the best possible chance of making loads of goal-line clearances at Premier League level.

=6. Mark Noble: 10

Special mention for the only midfielder on this list. We reckon this is because, at least in our head, Noble spent half his career guarding the post at corner kicks, therefore putting him in a position to clear goal-bound headers and volleys and whatnot fairly regularly.

Just a theory. Someone do the research on that and get back to us, please. Thanks.

READ NEXT: Recalling Steven Taylor’s gloriously sh*t, am-dram handball sniper death

TRY A QUIZ: Can you name the top goalscoring defenders in Premier League history?

=6. Steven Taylor: 10

In what comes as a shock to absolutely nobody in the world, Taylor is of course one of the Prem’s top goal-line clearers.

The man is a master of the art, having produced one of the greatest goal-line clearances of all time when he blatantly saved the goal with his hand, then clutched his abdomen as if the ball had shot him in the intestines, and was promptly sent off.

That was in the same match that Kieron Dyer and Lee Bowyer had a full-on scrap. They’re a different breed up in Newcastle.

One of his centre-back partners is also on this list later on… That can’t be a coincidence.

=6. Phil Bardsley: 10

A man who was extremely destined to be on this list. As he was born, the midwife picked him up and said, “I sense greatness in this one. Yes, one day, he will make it onto the list of most Premier League goal-line clearances.”

‘What the f*ck is the Premier League?’ Asks Mrs. Bardsley through heaving breaths of relief and joy.

“When the time comes, you will know.”

=6. Leighton Baines: 10

The first non-centre-back on this list, and actually quite an attacking fullback for the period he was in his pomp. That makes his place at this esteemed table of goalkeeper saviours all the more impressive.

Someone make some fan art of Baines parking his Vespa on double yellow goal lines, wearing a perfectly tailored suit.

Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold, right with Liverpool's Andrew Robertson, pose for the cameras following the presentation of the English Premier League trophy, Anfield, Liverpool, July 2020.

TRY A QUIZ: Can you name the 20 defenders with the most assists in Premier League history?

5. Tyrone Mings: 11

We can see this for Mings. He gives off a very last-ditch aura. When we picture him in our mind’s eye, Mings is lunging for a ball that is almost but not quite out of his reach.

He’s only 31 — plenty of time to catch Mr. Mee at the zenith of this list.

4. Titus Bramble: 12

It’s mad to think that Bobby Robson signed Bramble for Newcastle, considering this was one of the Toon’s most successful periods in the Premier League era.

Bramble was once voted the worst player in the Premier League, and he once got an injury that meant his calf nearly exploded.

What Titus lacked in natural ability, he made up for in hurling himself at goal-bound balls.

=2. James Tarkowski: 13

For a lad who grew up idolising David Beckham and Paul Scholes, Tarkowski seems far more intent on denying beautiful goals than he is on scoring them.

Imagine what might have come to pass had Becks tried that goal from his own half against Wimbledon, and a time-travelling James Tarkowski just c*nted it off the line, into row Z. Sliding doors.

=2. Joleon Lescott: 13

You’ve got to think that the majority of these clearances didn’t come during his time on top of the world with Man City, but when he was at Everton or West Brom or Aston Villa (when they were sh*t).

If we’d been hit by a car at five years old, as Lescott was, we probably wouldn’t have become a commanding Premier League and international centre-half.

We’d have probably avoided all danger and conflict. Lescott said f*ck that, and committed his career to denying goals. Respect it.

1. Ben Mee: 14

A last ditch son of a b*tch. The goal-line G.O.A.T. Mee is out the front of the saloon shooting down Pinkertons with the last bullet in his goddamn revolver.

Superb work from the Brentford man. Pleasingly, Mee currently has exactly the same number of Premier League goals and goal-line clearances. Balance, equilibrium, beauty, everything in its right place.