England GK Debuts; The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
Aaron Ramsdale was recalled by Gareth Southgate to replace Nick Pope in the England setup, following a great September for the 23-year-old and his new club Arsenal.
Ramsdale, who suffered two consecutive Premier League relegations before his move to the Emirates this summer, is back in the fold after debutising as third choice ‘keeper during the Euros.
However, the former Sheffield United stopper is yet to make his debut for the senior team and could be in line to win his first cap against Andorra.
It is unlikely Ramsdale will face much of a task to keep the Andorrans at bay, but how have some of his predecessors faired in their England debuts? Let's find out...
David Seaman - 1989 v Denmark, Friendly
The illustrious international career of David Seaman started in unusual fashion, as he came on as a 65th minute substitute away to Denmark in Copenhagen. Both managers agreed to make a maximum of four subs, but unusually Seaman was brought on with just 25 minutes to go, rather than as a half time goalkeeping change which is custom in modern international football.
Needless to say, the Arsenal legend had very little time to impress on his debut after coming on for the stalwart, Peter Shilton. The game ended 1-1, unchanged from Seaman’s arrival, as Denmark were happy to take their point against the previous year’s World Cup quarter finalists. Five major tournaments later, Seaman certainly pushed on from his cameo.
Gordon Banks - 1963 v Scotland, Friendly
England’s greatest ever goalkeeper started his tenure in the worst possible fashion, with a home defeat to Scotland. Gordon Banks’ greatest moment came at Wembley when he would help England lift the Jules Rimet trophy, but after half an hour of his international debut in 1963 he would have wanted the same ground to swallow him up.
A Jim Baxter brace saw England 2-0 down to the Auld Enemy and although Bryan Douglas pulled one back for Alf Ramsay’s men, Banks first game would be a disappointing one. Thankfully, Banks kept his place, went the next seven unbeaten and the rest is history.
Jack Butland & John Ruddy - 2012 v Italy, Friendly
Unusually, two goalkeepers made their debut in England’s 2-1 friendly win over Italy (oddly enough in Switzerland), Jack Butland and John Ruddy, who admittingly have not had the glittering international careers of the previous two. In fact the latter made his only appearance in this game as England avenged (sort of) their penalty shootout defeat to Italy in Euro 2012 (sound familiar), just two months on.
Birmingham City youngster Butland started the match in Bern making his international debut at the age of only 19, having been part of Roy Hodgson’s squad at that summer’s European Championship. He would play well until half time as England went in level at 1-1, before being replaced by the slightly longer in the tooth, John Ruddy. The Norwich stopper, who missed out on Euro 2012 through injury, dealt well with a resurgent Italy and pulled off some good saves as Jermaine Defoe’s late goal snatched a 2-1 win for the Three Lions.