Manchester City have two senior international goalkeepers they can call upon, in England's Ellie Roebuck and Lioness-turned-Scotland star Sandy MacIver, two shot-stoppers with heaps of experience and two Olympians. But between them this season, they’ve managed just two appearances in all competitions for the club. Why? Because of 19-year-old Khiara Keating.
Chosen by head coach Gareth Taylor to start City’s opening game of the 2023-24 Women’s Super League, the teenager has yet to relinquish the privilege of being first-choice, keeping three clean sheets in her first four outings to be one of the stories of the season so far.
Keating’s performances have earned her plenty of plaudits, a Player of the Month nomination and, most notably of all, a first senior England call-up. It’s never easy to break through as a young goalkeeper – it’s a rarity, even, to see a teenage shot-stopper thrust into the starting role at any level – but the confidence and quality with which Keating has done so has been incredibly impressive.
What is it about this diminutive 19-year-old, then, that has rocketed her up City’s pecking order and into the picture for the Lionesses?