Yashin Trophy,

Unveiling Excellence: The Yashin Trophy and its Illustrious History of Winners

In the realm of football awards, the Ballon d’Or stands tall as the most renowned individual honor, tracing its roots back to 1956. It has consistently been revered as the pinnacle of recognition for professional footballers, symbolizing excellence and prestige.

However, amidst the glittering world of football accolades, there exists a relatively new but equally significant trophy – the Yashin Trophy. In this article, we delve into the depths of this emerging award, exploring its origins, its historical significance, and the elite athletes who have clinched its coveted title in recent years. Alongside this, we will shed light on various other individual honors that grace the footballing landscape each season.


The Yashin Trophy

The Yashin Trophy, inaugurated in 2019, stands as a beacon of recognition for the outstanding goalkeepers around the globe. Presented annually at the Ballon d’Or ceremony, this award ensures that the unsung heroes guarding the goalposts receive their due acknowledgment. The process involves a meticulous selection, with a longlist and shortlist compiled by France Football. A jury comprising 211 expert journalists, each representing a FIFA-affiliated country, then casts their votes, assigning scores on a scale of 6 to 1.


Lev Yashin: A Goalkeeping Legend

The Yashin Trophy derives its name from Lev Yashin, an iconic Russian goalkeeper hailed by many as the greatest in the history of the sport. Yashin’s legacy is unparalleled, being the sole goalkeeper to have ever clinched the Ballon d’Or. His remarkable career, boasting 270 clean sheets and 150 saved penalties, solidified his status as a shot-stopping virtuoso during his tenure with Dynamo Moscow and the Soviet Union national team in the 1950s and 1960s.

Apart from clinching numerous team honors, including five Soviet Top League titles and a European Championship trophy, Yashin earned a myriad of individual accolades. His nine-time European Goalkeeper of the Year titles, two appearances in the UEFA European Championship Team of the Tournament, and the prestigious Order of Lenin exemplify his indelible impact on the game. Notably, Yashin’s crowning achievement was the Ballon d’Or in 1963, a feat unmatched by any goalkeeper since.


Yashin Trophy: A Roll Call of Excellence

Since its inception, the Yashin Trophy has witnessed a select few goalkeeping maestros etching their names into footballing history. Here’s a chronological list of the distinguished winners:


  • Winner: Alisson (Brazil and Liverpool)
  • Runner-up: Marc-Andre Ter Stegen (Germany and Barcelona)
  • 3rd place: Ederson (Brazil and Manchester City)


  • Not awarded due to the Covid-19 pandemic


  • Winner: Gianluigi Donnarumma (Italy and Paris Saint Germain)
  • Runner-up: Edouard Mendy (Senegal and Chelsea)
  • 3rd place: Jan Oblak (Slovenia and Atletico Madrid)


  • Winner: Thibaut Courtois (Belgium and Real Madrid)
  • Runner-up: Alisson (Brazil and Liverpool)
  • 3rd place: Ederson (Brazil and Manchester City)


The Art of Selection: How the Yashin Trophy is Won

The Yashin Trophy employs a points system, mirroring the Ballon d’Or’s approach, to determine the ultimate winner. Expert journalists from FIFA-affiliated nations form the jury, selecting three goalkeepers from the France Football-published shortlist and awarding them 5, 3, or 1 point(s). The keeper amassing the highest total points claims the prestigious trophy.

The results can swing dramatically, as witnessed in 2019 when Alisson dominated with 795 points, leaving the competition far behind. Conversely, 2021 saw a closer race, with Mendy trailing Donnarumma by a mere 190 points.

In conclusion, the Yashin Trophy not only honors the outstanding goalkeepers but also pays homage to a goalkeeping luminary, Lev Yashin. As this accolade continues to carve its place in football’s rich tapestry, it remains a testament to the unsung heroes who, clad in gloves, guard the fortress and define excellence between the goalposts.