Who is Andries Noppert? The towering Dutch goalkeeper making his debut with the Netherlands at the World Cup

Andries Noppert Netherlands 2022Getty

With the Netherlands returning to football's world stage having missed out on the 2018 World Cup, plenty has changed since their last appearance in 2014, and yet at the same time, everything feels eerily similar.

Robin van Persie is long gone, but Daley Blind remains and - somehow - Louis van Gaal on the touchline.

Nobody needs reminding of Van Gaal's eccentric persona and pragmatic approach to management. If he likes you, he'll make use of you, no matter the circumstances.

But even Van Gaal's colourful personality doesn't do justice to the sensational, fairytale story that is Andries Noppert and his Netherlands debut in their World Cup opener against Senegal.

So, who is he and what's all the fuss about the apparent monster among men?

Who is Andries Noppert?

Date of birth: April 7, 1994
Place of birth:Heerenveen, Netherlands
Clubs:Heerenveen, NAC Breda, Foggia, Dordrecht, Go Ahead Eagles

Andries Noppert is a Dutch goalkeeper who currently plays for Eredivisie side Heerenveen and - now - the Netherlands national team.

Born and raised in Heerenveen, the 28-year-old began his football career with his local side but failed to make an appearance for them before leaving in 2014.

He would then embark on something of a nomadic career as a backup stopper within the Dutch football pyramid, making just six league appearances in four years for NAC Breda between 2014 and 2018.

Not satisfied with his role as second fiddle, he headed to Italian Serie B side Foggia for the 2018/19 campaign. They were relegated, refused entry into Serie C and made defunct at the end of that season.

A move back to the Netherlands followed, where Noppert joined second tier outfit FC Dordrecht and resisted calls from his family - and his wife - to give up his career as a footballer and take up a more sustainable career as a police officer. He was released by the second tier side after just one year and went without a club from June 2020 to July 2021, leaving his career in severe doubt; you can understand why his family thought the dream was over.

Noppert refused to let that dream die, though, and a goalkeeping emergency at newly-promoted Eredivisie side Go Ahead Eagles presented him with his chance that January. After a slow start, he got his chance between the sticks and helped them to retain top-flight status.

His form during his one-season stay earned him a move back to Heerenveen, where he has since continued his ascent and come full circle.

What height is Andries Noppert?

As you might have been able to tell, Noppert is tall. Pretty damn tall.

He wouldn't look out of place between the ropes of a WWE ring, which says a lot.

That's because he stands at an astounding 2.03m, or 6'8, making him the tallest player at the 2022 World Cup.

For some context, that is the same height as WWE superstar Braun Strowman. You can now see why we referred to Noppert as a 'monster among men' earlier; wrestling fans in the room will now be aware that he is in fact the same size as the actual monster among men.

When did Andries Noppert make his international debut?

Noppert was first called up to the Netherlands squad in the autumn of 2022 by Van Gaal, which was a dream come true considering just a year before his career as a footballer looked to be over.

He didn't make his debut, though, deputising behind veteran Remko Pasveer.

It was a surprise, then, when fans learned that Noppert would make his Netherlands debut in the Oranje's World Cup opener against Senegal in Group A.

A man with no international experience, who was unemployed some two years ago, starting in the Netherlands' return to the World Cup. No pressure, right?

Andries Noppert career stats

NAC Breda7
Go Ahead Eagles20