Ben Foster: How to save penalties

The key to saving penalties is trusting your instincts, says WBA goalkeeper Ben Foster

“Help! I haven’t saved a penalty for my Sunday League side in over a year and rarely even come close to keeping them out. What should I be doing?”

Tim Clancy, via email

More after the break

Ben Foster says:

“There are four key things you need to cover. First, as the player is approaching the spot study his body shape, watch where he looks, how he places the ball; any tiny indicators as to where he might be hitting it.

You also want to look like you’re filling the goal: stand big, stretch your arms out and move around a little bit.

Make yourself look as imposing as possible. If you know your opponent, think about what they have done in the past, but if you can’t do that make a choice and go with it.

A penalty is 12 yards away so you haven’t got much time to move your feet and get a dive in. Try to read where they’re going to place it and trust your instincts. 

Most importantly, leave it until the last second to make your move. Don’t dive too early because, while he’s running up, you don’t want to be moving in the direction you’re going to go because the better players will just roll it in the opposite corner.”

Ben was speaking on behalf of GK:Icon. Visit 

For more football tips see:
Joe Hart: Guide to all-round keeping excellence
Paul Robinson's guide to saving penalties
Asmir Begovic: How to save penalties

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