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Football News: Football Comparisons 2 - The Schmeichels

Football Comparisons 2 - The Schmeichels
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Comparison 2 - The Schmeichels, Peter versus Kasper


Poor Kasper has spent his entire life being compared to his father, but he has drawn even more comparisons in recent years when he claimed, with a straight face as well, that he was a better keeper than his dad. A big claim like that cannot be allowed to pass by without being examined thoroughly, as Peter is one of the best of all-time, though it was a different era that he played in. That is the main problem with comparing them, the skillset required to be a top keeper is very different now, with kicking being a much bigger part of a keeper's game. Added to that, Schmeichel senior was playing for a team that was dominant for most of his career, while the younger Schmeichel has never played for a dominant team at any point, even when he won the title.

It does seem like most people think they are similar because Kasper has copied Peter's 'starfish' when facing an onrushing forward, except with much less success than his father had. Peter's presence was so big that him rushing out, making himself look big, used to terrify forwards, while Kasper would struggle to scare a small child into missing. Plus it helps that Peter was bigger built, though Kasper tends to carry an extra bit around the middle to compete... While Kasper is quicker across the ground, but Peter always seemed to have better anticipation and be out sooner than Kasper, meaning he would be closer to the forward and more likely to shut off their options and stop the shot. The only person I ever saw that seemed to have an answer to Peter's starfish was Robbie Fowler, who had the presence of mind to slot it between his legs when one-on-one. Other strikers would lose their focus with him rushing towards them, unlike Kasper, who does not seem to scare any opponents and concedes regularly on one-on-ones. He just does not scare forwards like his dad.

That brings me to command of the area, which is clearly a win for Peter. Everyone knew whose penalty box it was, on both teams, when Peter was in goal. He went beyond commanding to dominating it. It was his box and you did as he told you while you were in it and no one questioned him there, even when he was the one making the mistakes. Kasper, on the other hand, does not have that same control. There are times when you can see defenders unsure of what to do when he is coming out for the ball, sometimes getting in his way and making it difficult for him to claim high balls. No one would ever think about getting in Peter's way.

Peter also edges communication, though his communication often consisted of him screaming at defenders, they listened when he gave them a shout and knew they could trust him to guide their line when needed. Kasper is not the best communicator, while he tries to be like his dad and control his defence, it is a skill that is beyond his abilities. He does not have that decisive leadership quality that Peter had in spades. Not that it is really a black mark against him as very few players in history have had that ability to dominate the box and the players in it.

The control of the area helped Peter to be much better at collecting crosses, as defenders would clear out of his way and so would most attackers. Kasper, on the other hand, often has to fight through defenders, as well as attackers, to get to crosses, which makes it a struggle for him. His catching is not as good as his father's either, though that could be in part due to the modern balls moving more in the air.

When it comes to the basic art of being a goalkeeper, the shot stopping, positioning on the line, agility, reactions and movement of the feet across the ground, Peter was clearly better than Kasper. When Peter was in goal, you knew your team was facing one of the best in the world and would have to do something special to beat him. When facing Kasper, it is just another Premier League keeper, and not one of the best ones either.

Where Kasper does manage to compare with his dad is in distribution. Kasper is much better at kicking the ball than his dad, though Peter had an excellent and accurate throw on him that was almost a match for any kick. It really does seem that, no matter how hard I try to come up with a reason why Kasper is deserving of being compared to his dad, he simply is not even close to being at the same level and never will be.

Written by Tris Burke April 10 2019 06:15:18