Former Arsenal goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal is in her first season with Atletico Madrid after she swapped North London for sunny Spain last summer.
The 30-year-old Dutch international captain spent four years with The Gunners during which she lifted the FA Women’s Super League title along with two FA Women’s Continental League Cups.
Like most of Europe, the Spanish Primera Division Femenina is currently suspended due to the Coronavirus crisis. Atletico Madrid are in second place with nine games left to play. With the season having come to a halt, FA Women’s Super League Full-Time have taken a look at the impact which Van Veenendaal has made in her first season at the Centro Deportivo Wanda Alcalá de Henares.
Van Veenendaal has shared the goalkeeping duties with Spanish international keeper Lola Gallardo this season. The former Arsenal keeper is one game behind Gallardo in terms of Primera Division appearances with Van Veenendaal having appeared in 10 fixtures compared to her teammate’s tally of 11. In her 10 games, Van Veenendaal has conceded just six goals whereas Gallardo has been beaten once per game on average.
It is Van Veenendaal who has come out on top in terms of appearances in the UEFA Women’s Champions League. The Dutch keeper has appeared in all four ties in the competition, although she is yet to keep a clean sheet. Atletico are set to face Primera Division title rivals FC Barcelona in the quarter-finals over two legs.
The only other appearance which Van Veenendaal has made in an Atletico shirt this season came in a Copa de la Reina penalty shootout defeat to Real Betis in February.
Despite sharing goalkeeping duties, the statistics point to the fact that Van Veenendaal has been the best performing goalkeeper for Atletico so far this season. Her involvement in all of Atletico’s matches in the UEFA Champions League highlights that fact that manager Dani Gonzalez might have the most faith in her ability out of his three senior goalkeepers.