Chelsea’s Thibaut Courtois: Why Man United legend was my idol

Chelsea No1 Thibaut Courtois says every goalkeeper can learn something from Edwin van der Sar

Thibaut Courtous has revealed that he used to idolise Manchester United legend Edwin van der Sar.

The Chelsea number one has emerged as one of the Premier League’s best goalkeepers following his return from a three-year loan spell at Atletico Madrid last summer.

The 22-year-old Blues shot stopper has already amassed seven clean sheets in the Premier League this season ahead of his first League Cup final against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.

And Courtois has credited Van der Sar with having a big influence on his style of goalkeeping after he studied the former United shot stopper during the early stages of Belgian’s career.

“If I looked up to somebody, it was Edwin van der Sar,” Courtois told Champions Magazine.

“I am similar to him: I am really relaxed in goal and I have [similar] posture, we’re both big, but I have good reflexes and I am quick on the floor.

“I watched a lot of Premier League games growing up and I saw him stand out. Every goalkeeper has something that you can steal from him.”

The Belgium international is currently first choice for club and country despite competition from Blues number two Petr Cech and his national team understudy, Simon Mignolet.

Courtois, who won La Liga, Copa del Rey and the Europa League during his time at the Rojiblanco, admitted he never envisaged tasting so much success so soon into his playing career.

“It’s like living a dream to achieve those things already. But you keep working to achieve more and more and more,” Courtois added.

“When I was 14 or 15 years old I couldn’t imagine that I would be here now, playing at Chelsea, playing with Belgium at the World Cup, winning [so] many trophies already.”

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