I'm watching a football match, and a black goalkeeper is guarding one of the goals. This seems to be very rare by my observation.

For example, in the 100m dash, all the recent Olympic and World champions have had Afro-Caribbean ancestry.

Why are so few goalkeepers at high level football black? Is there reputable scientific evidence that indicates a physiological difference between the different races which impacts their goalkeeping ability, or is the difference down to cultural factors?

  • 2
    Probably the same reason there are less white runningbacks in the NFL. Society's prejudices come out with kids at a very very early age and kids are typecasted into positions on the sports they play. Sure there are kids that break the mold. But if you are white playing football and have speed you will quickly be put into a LB, safety, WR, QB position... And I am sure black kids playing soccer will be put into a position that supposedly uses their "speed" more instead of goalie. Chance has a much greater effect than anatomy.
    – Coach-D
    Commented Jan 2, 2019 at 16:45
  • Please guys, remember the story of the Golden Tooth: you need to observe a event before trying to explain it. Has it ever been observed that there is "too few black goalkeepers" in high level football?
    – Bebs
    Commented Sep 27, 2019 at 8:20

3 Answers 3


Its just a choice they make when they first start playing. Most of black football players tend to play strikers, midfielders, or defenders. There's definitely a big number of black goalkeepers it's just that they might not be playing in big clubs at the moment (Although there are some that do).

Steve Mandanda - Marseille & France National Team
Carlos Kameni - Fenerbahçe SK (Turkey)
Francis Uzoho - Elche CF

  • I'm actually a Fenebahçe fan, so I personally know Kameni. But as I said, there is a huge difference and this cannot be explained with your way; it's my thought. Somehow there must be a physical or mental determinant. Commented Sep 27, 2019 at 16:46

I think there's also a reverse bias / selection reason. When a certain group is known for certain qualities, either due to fact or stereotypes, the market is more willing to hire people from that group for certain positions, and people from that group in turn are more likely to engage in career path that lead to that certain position.


Its just like quaterbacks , its a thinking rooted in racism that white people make better decisions.

  • The question is asking about football aka soccer, not American Football!
    – alamoot
    Commented Jan 3, 2021 at 18:15
  • 1
    @alamoot I don't think the poster is confused - they're making a comparison to American football.
    – Joe
    Commented Jan 3, 2021 at 21:34
  • 1
    That said, this answer would be better with more than a sentence; can you show this is true?
    – Joe
    Commented Jan 3, 2021 at 21:35
  • 1
    Comparing two completely different sports with different roots makes no sense. And goalkeeping has very little (nothing) in common with a QB's position.
    – dly
    Commented Jan 3, 2021 at 21:48
  • 1
    It is notable that 1) both quarterbacks and goalkeepers have historically had a significantly lower proportion of non-white players, and 2) both quarterbacks and goalkeepers have been regarded as positions that require "brains" rather than just "brawn". I don't think it's a huge leap from those facts to the conclusion Star is drawing, although I entirely agree that this would be a much stronger answer if supported with evidence rather than just the raw assertion.
    – Philip Kendall
    Commented Jan 4, 2021 at 9:51

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.