When someone asks me who I think the most underrated player in the world is, I always have the same response.
I consistently reply "every goalkeeper in the world".
Ironically, I always get the same response of a blank empty stare, but I stand by my decision - goalkeepers do not get the credit they really deserve.
The position of goalkeeper is one which is not recognised as significantly as it should be - essentially without a goalkeeper, games would reach cricket scores.
They can go from hero to zero in a matter of minutes, as forgotten star Craig Gordon once said: "Being a goalkeeper is a thankless job. One mistake puts you down in the depths yet again".
His award for the best save in 20 years of the Premier League may save him a few sleepless nights, however, he, along with pretty much every other 'keeper in the world, has had his fair share of nightmares.
Being a goalkeeper myself, I know the feeling of a mistake. Seeing the ball trickle into the back of the net after a personal mishap is a feeling which will stay with me to the grave.
The ironic reassurances of your team-mates do nothing to stop the sinking feeling in your stomach.
However, there is a universal empathy between goalkeepers of all kinds, as goalkeeping mistakes and outfield mistakes are not on the same level whatsoever.
A mistake away from the goal will, nine times out of 10, be rectified. A mistake near the goal, however, is more than likely going to result in a goal for the opposition.
Goalkeeping is a fickle business. When you are in form, everyone is supportive, but when you're having a bad time, you are a solitary soldier.
That is why it is imperative for each and every goalkeeper to pick themselves up after a mistake, hold their head high, and take each save as it comes.
Write for GiveMeSport! Sign-up to the GMS Writing Academy here: https://bit.ly/12evFlH
DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms