Thibaut Courtois explains which goalkeepers are better than him

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Thibaut Courtois has established himself as one of the best goalkeepers on the planet in recent years, having returned from a long spell with Atletico Madrid to take over as Chelsea's number one.

It's fair to say that the 24-year-old has enough self confidence in his abilities to last a lifetime, but during an interview on Belgian radio station RBF he was forced to reflect on some of his weaker points.

During a quick-fire round of questions, the Belgian number one was asked about some of his rivals for the crown of world's top stopper and was required to give an answer on what attributes some of them have that he doesn't.

Before that Courtois was talking about how Antonio Conte's 3-4-3 formation has proved so successful so far this season.

The Blues currently sit second in the Premier League table, just a point behind leaders Liverpool, and are shaping themselves up for another push for the title following last season's shameful showing that saw them miss out on European football completely.

Footballers aren't generally known for their unflinching self-criticism, or not in public at least, but Courtois didn't hold back when asked what qualities he didn't possess but some of his rivals did.

The station asked him to compare himself to the likes of Manuel Neuer, Gianluigi Buffon, David de Gea, Petr Cech, Simon Mignolet and Silvio Proto, Belgium's third choice keeper.

Admiration for Cech

Of his rivals, he answered:

Manuel Neuer: “Playing the game forward”.

Gianluigi Buffon: “The capacities of a leader”.

David De Gea: “He has very good reflexes. On his line, he is one of the best but I am too”.

Simon Mignolet: “One against one”.

Silvio Proto: “He’s a warrior on the ground”.

However, the biggest praise was reserved for his former Chelsea colleague Petr Cech, whom he spent one season with before the latter headed across London to join Arsenal in the summer of 2015.

“A lot of respect for him, the best guy I’ve met in football at all levels, and he always helped and advised me on my arrival in Chelsea,” Courtois said.

Cech was restricted to just seven appearances during the 2014/15 season as Courtois ousted him of the number one spot at Stamford Bridge.

The Czech veteran is widely regarded as one of the game's good guys, and the way he handled his place at Stamford Bridge being taken is a testament to his professionalism.

Either way, it's good to see such camaraderie within today's game.

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Premier League
David de Gea
Thibaut Courtois
Manuel Neuer

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