With the starting transfer budgets of teams being impacted by the summer transfer window at the start of any Football Manager 21 career, most clubs don’t have a lot of spending power. This is especially true for those outside of the top-flight leagues of the world.
So, if you’ve burned through the majority of your budget or just don’t have much and need a capable goalkeeper between the sticks, you’ll want to sign one of these top cheap goalkeepers in FM 21, or one of the top free agents on offer.
On this page, you can find some of FM 21’s best-rated affordable goalkeepers to sign, shoring up your defence in a critical position for a low transfer fee and wages.
Finding bargain goalkeepers of FM 21 worth signing
When negotiating a player’s transfer in Football Manager 21, the transfer fee is affected by a few things included in the game. The player’s age, team, the level that they play at, the enquiring club’s status, and their ability all help to decide a fee. This makes finding the best cheap goalkeeper for your team somewhat troublesome.
The players on this page are only those who are available at the start of each save, ruling out recent transfers, loanees, and players who’ve recently penned a new contract. To ensure that we selected the cheap goalkeepers worth signing, they all have a minimum current ability (CA) of 125, wages of less than £15,000 per week, a positional rating of at least 18, and are available for less than £3.5 million.
To give you some perspective to the current ability of the cheap goalkeepers in this list, some other players who feature the same CA rating as the lowest CA in this list are, Tottenham’s ex goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes, veteran Diego Cavalieri and current Celtic number-one Vasilis Barkas.
On this page, the cheap goalkeepers of FM 21 we found are ranked by their CA, with a table of full of cheap GKs to sign at the bottom of the article. Due to everyone experiencing unique gameplay, we’ve tried to cover a range of players that are cheap and meet our criteria for most managers.
Robinson Zapata (CA 132 / PA 135)
Team: Jaguares de Córdoba FC
Transfer Cost: £9,000
Best Attributes: 17 Leadership, 17 Penalty Taking, 16 Kicking
A veteran journeyman, Robinson Zapata started his lengthy career back in 1997 with Colombian outfit CD América de Cali. After spending the majority of his career in South America, playing in Colombia and for prestigious Argentinian sides Independiente and Rosario, Zapata was brought to Europe by Romanian giants Steaua Bucureşti in 2007.
Finding plenty of success in Romania, the Colombian played 111 times, kept 46 clean sheets, and collected 12 UEFA Champions League appearances. Zapata left FCSB in 2010, moving to Galatasaray, but the move didn’t work out. So, he returned home to Colombia the following year, where he has plied his trade ever since.
At 41 years-old, Zapata’s best days are behind him, with retirement looming in FM 21. Still, at a cost of just £9,000, a two-year contract, and a starting CA that’s the same as the experienced Joe Hart (132 CA), he could be a reliable short-term fixture for a club struggling financially.
Boasting 17 leadership, he can become a commanding figure for your side on the pitch and even in the event that your strikers aren’t converting penalties: his 17 penalty taking makes him a viable candidate from the spot. His 15 reflexes and 14 one on one attribute further attest to his ability in goal.
Álvaro Montero (CA 130 / PA 155)
Team: Club Deportes Tolima
Transfer Cost: £525,000
Best Attributes: 17 Jumping Reach, 15 Handling, 14 Reflexes
Our next player, Álvaro Montero, also hails from Colombia but started his career in Brazil with AD São Caetano, then shortly moving to Argentina to play for San Lorenzo. Failing to make an impact, he moved to his native Colombia, joining Cúcuta Deportivo in 2017 before Deportes Tolima signed him in 2018.
After a stuttering start to his career, Montero has made 96 appearances for his current club to date, keeping 39 clean sheets in the process. He even boasts three international caps for Colombia, after debuting in 2019 for Los Cafeteros.
Starting FM 21 with a respectable 130 CA, his impressive 155 PA coupled with his low wages and transfer fee make Montero a suitable target for any club looking to build their stature within the game.
His 15 handling and 14 reflexes are the highlights of his goalkeeping attributes, but he shows plenty of room for improvement across the board. Montero’s 13 one on ones and 13 decisions can certainly improve, helping to make the netminder a great choice for promotion-chasing sides.
David González (CA 130 / PA 140)
Team: Asociación Deportivo Cali
Transfer Cost: £10,500
Best Attributes: 18 Jumping Reach, 15 Leadership, 14 Strength
In the real world of football, David González hung up his boots and retired in January 2021. After travelling the world to play in Colombia, England, Scotland, Argentina, and Turkey, he truly represents the journeyman philosophy, endearing himself to fans all over.
González began playing for Independiente Medellín in 1999, later moving to Turkey to play for Rizespor. After an ensuing short stay in Argentina, the English leagues came calling, with González most prominently lining up for Manchester City. Following spells with Brighton and Barnsley, the Colombian stopper moved back to his home nation. Failing to settle at a couple of clubs, he returned to Independiente Medellín until January 2020, when he moved to Deportivo Cali.
While he has retired now, in FM 21, González is happy to pen a two-year deal with clubs willing to spend the £10,750 for his services. His 15 leadership can help to inspire the defence around him, creating a solid unit against offensive teams.
Able to speak fluent English, Spanish, and basic Dutch, he presents a versatile option when fitting into the social groups of the dressing room. González’s ability on the pitch is more than capable of helping out those lower league teams staving off relegation. With 13 handling and 13 reflexes, he could also serve as an adept back-up, adding depth to your side.
Mykyta Shevchenko (CA 129 / PA 130)
Team: FC Zorya Luhansk
Value: £2.3 million
Transfer Cost: £3.5 million
Best Attributes: 18 Bravery, 18 Leadership, 15 Determination
Mykyta Shevchenko came through the academy of Ukrainian giants Shakhtar Donetsk, continuing his development through various loan spells in Ukraine, including spells with Karpaty Lviv and his current club, Zorya Luhansk.
Playing just six games for Shakhtar and conceding six goals, he was signed permanently by Zorya Luhansk on a free transfer in early 2019. Since his arrival, he’s made 105 appearances and kept 41 clean sheets so far.
Easily the most expensive option of the top-five cheap FM 21 goalkeepers here, Shevchenko costs around £3.5 million. However, at 27-years-old, he is capable of enjoying a lengthy stay in first-team football. The outstanding 18 bravery that he possesses means that he will happily put his body on the line for your side, protecting those edgy one-nil leads in crucial games.
Holding 14 handling and 14 reflexes, the Ukrainian shot-stopper will deny opponents regularly. Paired with an 18 leadership attribute that makes his defence rally around him in tough situations, Shevchenko is a solid cheap choice.
Carlos Acevedo (CA 128 / PA 140)
Team: Club Santos Laguna
Transfer Cost: £800,000
Best Attributes: 20 Determination, 16 Communication, 15 Decisions
One-club man Carlos Acevedo developed in the Santos Laguna academy in Mexico, making his debut in 2016 at 20-years-old in a 3-1 defeat to Cruz Azul.
The young Mexican has 56 appearances so far – keeping 23 clean sheets and conceding 60 goals – attempting to become the first-choice for Santos Laguna in the Liga MX.
Available to sign for £475,000 at just 24-years-old, the young goalkeeper could be a mainstay for many years in a developing team. An incredible 20 determination sets this young shot-stopper apart from most players, making him work the hardest on and off of the pitch.
Possessing great mental attributes of 15 decisions and 15 leadership, Acevedo is a brilliant contender to become a first-choice option between the sticks. The netminder uses these mental attributes to organise his side with confidence and clarity, also incorporating his 16 communication. Focusing on improving his all-round ability in goal is a must to ensure that you get the best out of this goalkeeper.
All the bargain goalkeepers (GK) in FM 21 to sign
Plenty of goalkeepers reside in FM 21 with low transfer fees and low wages, but finding a suitable player with a good CA for your club can be tedious. Below is our table of all of the cheap goalkeepers that meet our criteria, have a minimum CA rating of 125, and won’t cost you more than £3.5 million.
|Robinson Zapata||41||£9,000||£3,100||132||135||Jaguares de Córdoba FC|
|Álvaro Montero||25||£525,000||£3,800||130||155||Club Deportes Tolima|
|David González||38||£10,500||£3,900||130||140||Asociación Deportivo Cali|
|Mykyta Shevchenko||27||£3.5 million||£7,000||129||130||FC Zorya Luhansk|
|Carlos Acevedo||24||£800,000||£5,250||128||140||Club Santos Laguna|
|Andrés Mosquera||28||£100,000||£1,400||128||129||Independiente Medellín|
|Sebastián Viera||37||£25,000||£6,000||127||135||CD Popular Junior|
|Luan Polli||27||£600,000||£1,800||126||138||Sport Club do Recife|
|Soslan Djanaev (Soslan Dzhanayev)||33||£900,000||£14,000||126||135||FC Sochi|
|José Cuadrado||35||£55,000||£2,900||126||132||Club Atlético Nacional|
|Leandro Castellanos||36||£14,000||£2,900||126||130||Independiente Santa Fe|
|Dominik Greif||23||£1.1 million||£1,600||125||145||Slovan Bratislava|
|Rodrigo Muñoz||38||£500,000||£3,600||125||139||Cerro Porteño|
|Matías Dituro||33||£220,000||£3,900||125||135||Universidad Católica|
|Dante Stipica||29||£360,000||£3,283||125||126||Pogoń Szczecin|
Looking for a decent back-up goalkeeper or a first-team shot-stopper to bolster your lower league side? See if any of the cheap FM 21 goalkeepers above can fill the gap without breaking the bank.