GOALKEEPING can be a thankless task, a position where the smallest of mistakes can cost a goal.

This season debate has raged throughout whether the AFC Bournemouth captain merits continued inclusion in Andoni Iraola’s side, with constant discussion whether the Brazilian is at fault whenever Cherries concede.

We have looked at all 48 goals Neto has conceded in the Premier League this term, reviewing each one to see whether the goalkeeper could truly be blamed.

Of course, for each goal conceded there are plenty of others saved - a fact that often goes unnoticed amongst the reactionary masses on social media.

This deep-dive must be prefaced with the fact that for a goalkeeper to be called into action, something must have gone wrong higher up the pitch.

A goalie is the footballing equivalent of an insurance policy.

But (hopefully) unlike our driving styles on the road, a football team constantly has to take risks, and as such, a goalkeeper plays a big role in a match.

It must also be noted that in the modern game, a goalkeeper is asked to do a lot more than just be a mere shot stopper.

Essential reading:

1. West Ham (h) – Jarrod Bowen (0-1) – xG 0.04

This one is fairly simple – no goalkeeper could be expected to stop this stunner from England international Bowen.

West Ham dispossess Joe Rothwell on the outskirts of his own box, quickly slipping in Bowen.

Neto is unsighted as the attacker curls into the top corner, giving him little chance.

2. Liverpool (a) – Luis Diaz (1-1) – xG 0.27

Again, this is just phenomenal play from a talented attacker.

It seems Cherries have just about dealt with the threat, but Diaz, perpendicular to the goal, has somehow flicked the ball up and volleyed it past Max Aarons and a stranded Neto.

Nothing the Brazilian can do here.

3. Liverpool (a) – Mohamed Salah (1-2) – xG 0.75

Is there a worse feeling for a goalkeeper?

Neto saves the initial penalty, denying a shot with an xG of 0.79.

However, the ball bounces straight back to Salah to tap home. Hard luck.

Not exactly the best following in from Neto’s defenders, but it seems unlikely anybody would have beaten Salah to the ball.

4. Liverpool (a) – Diogo Jota (1-3) – xG 0.34

This might be the first goal where Neto could have done slightly better.

The goalie is already tracking Dominic Szoboszlai’s initial long-range effort, before a deflection sends the ball in the wrong direction.

It’s not majorly off its original course, but enough to cause Neto to push it into the path of Jota.

Considering he is unsighted for the initial shot – and seemingly had it covered before the deflection - it would be harsh to blame Neto entirely here.

5. Tottenham (h) – James Maddison (0-1) – xG 0.60

Cherries are ripped apart far too easily, allowing Maddison free rein inside the box.

One-on-one, Maddison’s scuffed finish actually gives Neto a chance.

If the midfielder finishes properly, then Neto comes out of this looking a lot better.

He goes to save with his feet, expecting a low-driven effort, but instead it bobbles over his leg and past his hands as Neto dives late to recover.

However, the fact that Maddison is unmarked from eight yards is the biggest error here.

6. Tottenham (h) – Dejan Kulusevski (0-2) – xG 0.33

Cherries are once again caught flatfooted as Kulusevski nips ahead of two defenders to finish into the far corner.

No blaming Neto here.

7. Brentford (a) – Mathias Jensen (0-1) – xG 0.04

Bournemouth Echo: Action from Brentford v Cherries

This is the first proper blot on Neto’s record.

Not only has he rushed out of his goal and given away the free-kick, he is then caught out by the dead ball from a tight angle.

It was not Neto’s finest hour.

8. Brentford (a) Bryan Mbuemo (2-2) – xG 0.55

In stark contrast to Brentford’s opener, there is nothing Neto can do in this one-on-one. Milos Kerkez flies into a tackle and misses, taking himself out of the game.

Neto spreads himself big but Mbuemo has no pressure from a defender as he slots home. Bizarrely both Marcos Senesi and Illia Zabarnyi are tracking the runner, with neither opting to come across and help out.

9. Brighton (a) – Milos Kerkez OG (1-1) – xG N/A

Bournemouth Echo: Milos Kerkez heads past his own goalkeeper

Neto does not cover himself in glory here, but it could be argued that the blame should be apportioned 50/50.

Hungarian defender Kerkez opts to head the ball, taking it away from the awaiting Neto and into the back of his net. 

It is a poor attempt at a clearance even without the mix up with his goalkeeper.

Kerkez’s sheepish reaction after heading past Neto implies he recognises that he should not have gone for the ball, but ultimately this stems to a communication issue.

10. Brighton (a) – Kaoru Mitoma (1-2) – xG 0.22

A bizarre kick-off routine backfires spectacularly. Zabarnyi has surged forward on the referee’s whistle, but Cherries quickly lose the ball.

That allows Brighton to attack the Zabarnyi-shaped hole in the defence and easily score through Mitoma. A sly poke with the outside of his foot gives Neto no chance.

11. Brighton (a) – Kaoru Mitoma (1-3) – xG 0.51

Mitoma takes advantage of space vacated by Zabarnyi once again, peeling off his marker for a free header past Neto.

With the cross curling away from the goal, there is no reasonable expectation for Neto to come and claim.


12. Arsenal (h) – Bukayo Saka (0-1) – xG 0.81

This goal caused a few questions to be asked of Neto at the time, but that is perhaps unfair.

Gabriel Jesus tries to guide the ball back across the goal with a header, but instead inadvertently sends it towards the net.

It smacks off the post, but Neto has already scrambled back to attempt a save.

Saka is first to react, and pokes home. The fact that he is completely unmarked in the second phase of play indicates that Cherries’ defence have let themselves down here.

In fact, at no point inside the box during the attack is Saka properly marked.

13. Arsenal (h) – Martin Odegaard (0-2) – xG 0.79

Odegaard sends Neto the wrong way with this penalty, but ultimately the odds are weighted far too much in the favour of the attacker here.

14. Arsenal (h) – Kai Havertz (0-3) – xG 0.79

Ditto. A goalkeeper saving a penalty is a pleasant surprise, not the norm.

15. Arsenal (h) – Ben White (0-4) – xG 0.08

Another set-piece goal, but at least this one is not another spot-kick. Ben White’s looping header at a corner gives Neto no chance.

16. Everton (a) – James Garner (0-1) – xG 0.14

Zabarnyi slips and Everton pour forward.

Neto’s positioning looks slightly suspect, but in reality he is balancing the chance of Garner shooting or setting up the unmarked Abdoulaye Doucoure.

Caught between a rock and a hard place, Garner takes advantage.

17. Everton (a) – Jack Harrison (0-2) – xG 0.02

Bournemouth Echo: Neto punches the first cross...Neto punches the first cross... (Image: Sky Sports)

The first example this season of Neto being punished for his tendency to punch.

In this passage of play, the Brazilian gets his fists to two different crosses.

Overall, the decision to punch the second ball is correct, despite it leading to the goal.

It’s a dangerous ball and he’s able to beat everyone to it, and he gets a good enough connection.

It’s unfortunate that it lands at the feet of Harrison, who finishes very well.

However, it’s the first punch that is the mistake. A relatively tame cross is sent down his throat, but rather than catch it unopposed, he opts to clear.

Bournemouth Echo: ... but his clearance falls straight to Everton, who send in another cross... but his clearance falls straight to Everton, who send in another cross (Image: Sky Sports)

But because he is so close to his line, the clearance does not go far enough and is instantly recycled into the box.

18. Everton (a) – Abdoulaye Doucoure (0-3) - xG 0.33

Hard luck again here. Neto and Kerkez are well-poised to block Harrison’s initial effort, with the latter getting his body to the ball first.

That means they are both in a heap as Doucoure tucks home the rebound.

19. Wolves (h) – Matheus Cunha (1-1) – xG 0.06

A fabulous Cunha strike here. A Neto stop here would qualify for save of the season.

20. Wolves (h) – Sasa Kalajdzic – (1-2) – xG 0.45

Bournemouth Echo: Lloyd Kelly was furious at Neto for his mistakeLloyd Kelly was furious at Neto for his mistake (Image: Richard Crease)

The less said about this the better. Late on with 10 men, Neto rushes to take a goal kick short to Philip Billing on the edge of the area.

He is instantly swarmed, allowing Wolves to win the ball back and attack.

Neto has no chance one-on-one at close range, but it was a scenario of his own making.

21. Sheffield United (a) – Oli McBurnie (3-1) – xG 0.27

In terms of bad feelings for a goalkeeper, having your clean sheet taken away from you at the death must be up there.

An unmarked McBurnie gets on the end of a cross at the back stick, heading back across goal.

Neto can only stand and watch as it bounces past him.

22. Aston Villa (h) – Leon Bailey (1-1) – xG 0.07

Another great goal. Bailey starts on the right, cuts in and has three defenders to curl a shot past.

Neto rightly beaten by a fine strike.

23. Aston Villa (h) – Ollie Watkins (2-2) – xG 0.07

Watkins gets loose from Zabarnyi, quickly darting to open up enough space to flick a header across goal and past Neto. Once again, nothing the Brazilian can do.

The cross is perfectly weighted and gives Neto no chance to come and claim.

24. Nottingham Forest (a) – Anthony Elanga (0-1) – xG 0.37

Alex Scott runs into trouble in his own half and Forest quickly capitalise. A neat ball from Chris Wood slips in Elanga, who opens up his body to fire past Neto.

Perhaps sometimes in that situation Neto makes the save. Would be cruel to label it as his error, however.

25. Nottingham Forest (a) – Chris Wood (2-2) – xG 0.03

An outswinging corner finds Wood lurking in a sea of bodies.

Somehow the striker’s header goes through everybody, with Neto not having a reasonable chance of stopping it.

26. Tottenham (a) – Pape Mate Sarr (0-1) – xG 0.10

Another poor Neto pass out from the back is cut out, allowing Spurs to punish the mistake.

The only mitigating factor here is how much time Mate Sarr is given on the ball before taking a shot – the midfielder given acres before making up his mind.

Initial mistake is certainly Neto’s, but arguably the situation could be salvaged.

27. Tottenham (a) – Heung-Min Son (0-2) – xG 0.09

A clinical Spurs counter is emphatically finished by Son. A powerful finish that gives Neto little time to react and save.

28. Tottenham (a) – Richarlison (0-3) – xG 0.52

Far too simple here for Tottenham. Ball is cut back to an unmarked Richarlison, who calmly places home past Neto, the goalkeeper having to quickly change direction. Not many goalkeepers would make a save in this situation.

29. Liverpool (h) – Darwin Nunez (0-1) – xG 0.44

Again, too easy for an opposition number nine. Liverpool pass Cherries open, with Nunez given plenty of time and space to pick out the corner one-on-one.

30. Liverpool (h) – Diogo Jota (0-2) – xG 0.06

It’s cheap punditry to decry any goal conceded at the near post as poor goalkeeping. That is the case here. Liverpool get enough numbers forward in this attack, with Jota shooting early to beat Neto and Chris Mepham.

Due to the speed of the attack, Neto is still shuffling to get across as Jota is pulling the trigger.

31. Liverpool (h) – Diogo Jota (0-3) – xG 0.08

Another slice of luck against Cherries here. Jota again finds space inside the box, but completely fluffs his lines. However, the ball bounces away kindly enough to set him up for a second shot.

Too much chaos here for anybody to be properly in position to react, including Neto.

32. Liverpool (a) – Darwin Nunez (0-4) – xG 0.34

Nunez gets past his marker, Zabarnyi, before executive a deft touch to send the ball past Neto. Again, a pinpoint cross that gives Neto no chance to claim.

33. West Ham (a) – James Ward-Prowse (1-1) – xG 0.79

Another penalty, and this time it is dead ball specialist Ward-Prowse taking. Nothing to see here.

34. Nottingham Forest (h) – Callum Hudson-Odoi (1-1) – xG 0.01

Cherries fail to properly clear their lines, and that allows Hudson-Odoi to produce a bit of magic.

A fine curling strike, and with a defender blocking his view, Neto can only scramble across and watch it hit the back of the net.

35. Fulham (a) – Bobby Decordova Reid (0-1) – xG 0.09

Lewis Cook slips inside the area, allowing Decordova Reid a shooting chance at point-blank range. Again, nothing that Neto can do here.

36. Fulham (a) – Rodrigo Muniz (0-2) – xG 0.29

This was another goal that drew heavy criticism at the time.

However, Zabarnyi plays a big role here. The initial cross from Willian sees both centre-halves ball-watching, allowing Muniz to get a march on Zabarnyi.

Bournemouth Echo: Zabarnyi and Senesi both stop watching the run of MunizZabarnyi and Senesi both stop watching the run of Muniz (Image: Sky Sports)

Despite knowing that Neto rarely comes off his line, Zabarnyi ambitiously attempts to shield the ball back to his goalkeeper, a full six yards or so.

At this point Muniz recognises the opportunity, and simply pokes a leg past the Ukrainian to steer the ball past Neto, who has now been forced to come.

Bournemouth Echo: Zabarnyi does not properly shield the ball back to his keeper, allowing Muniz to easily get a touchZabarnyi does not properly shield the ball back to his keeper, allowing Muniz to easily get a touch (Image: Sky Sports)

A case of if in doubt, get it out. A simple clearance from the centre-half would have sufficed here.

37. Fulham (a) – Rodrigo Muniz (1-3) – xG 0.59

Another sloppy example of marking. Kerkez and Senesi go for the same man, allowing Muniz a free shot at the back post.

38. Newcastle (a) – Anthony Gordon (1-1) – xG 0.79

Yet another penalty. At least this is the first time since saving Salah’s spot-kick that Neto guesses right, but Gordon’s effort flies underneath his arm.

39. Newcastle (a) – Matt Ritchie (2-2) – xG 0.60

Cherries slip up again. Lloyd Kelly takes a tumble backtracking, with the ball ricocheting off Ritchie and Cook before falling kindly back to the Newcastle man. Neto left powerless to stop that.

40. Manchester City (h) – Phil Foden (0-1) – xG 0.86

Neto makes the initial stop to deny an awkward Erling Haaland effort, but the rebound falls to Phil Foden.

The bouncing strike makes it hard to properly parry away from goal, and Zabarnyi visibly slows twice whilst he is meant to be tracking Foden on the follow up.

41. Sheffield United (h) – Gustavo Hamer (0-1) – xG 0.24

Similar to the Foden goal. Neto saves an initial effort, but his parry falls to Hamer to tuck home.

This time there appears to be a better opportunity to push the rebound to one side, but instead the shot falls straight to the Sheffield United midfielder.

Harsh as the initial effort dictates, to an extent, what a goalie can do in terms of parrying, but you feel that top goalkeepers deal with that situation better.

42. Sheffield United (h) – Jack Robinson (0-2) – xG 0.24

Not one that Neto will want to see back again. Again, his default decision to punch is costly – and beggars belief.

He fists the ball into the back of Dominic Solanke when it seemed simpler to smother the ball with a scooped catch.

The rebound falls to Robinson to smash home.

43. Luton (h) – Tahith Chong – (0-1) – xG 0.56

A floated cross from Ross Barkley finds Chong in his own private postcode, leaving a simple headed finish.

The type of cross that tempts the goalkeeper into rushing out but can easily leave a shot stopper red in the face. Neto makes the right decision to stay on his line.

44. Luton (h) – Chiedozie Ogbene (0-2) – xG 0.53

Luton were ripping Cherries apart on the break, as evidenced by the high xG of their chances. Ogbene is found unmarked at the back post, and simply tucks home. Neto can only glare at his defence for leaving him so exposed.

45. Luton (h) – Ross Barkley (0-3) – xG 0.13

Another deadly counter. Barkley overpowers Neto, who is extremely wary of yet another cutback and is positioned at a halfway house to deal with the pass or the shot.

Although understandable, the indecision proves costly.

However, if Cook had not broken his own side’s offside trap, it would not have been an issue.

46. Everton (h) – Beto (1-1) – xG 0.43

This was a flashpoint in the debate about Neto’s suitability to start each week in the Premier League.

For once, the former Barcelona keeper opts for the catch. He does the hard part by claiming the ball under pressure, but inexplicably drops it as he tries to bring it under control.

Beyond the clear mistake, the decision making to not punch seemed odd considering he was going to collide with two different bodies.

His half-hearted appeal for a foul speaks volumes.

47 - Luton (a) – Jordan Clark (1-1) – xG 0.20

More misfortune, combined with another decent finish, gives Neto no chance here. Kelly seemingly stops the attack, but the ball wriggles free to Clark, who lashes home.

48 - Luton (a) – Carlton Morris (1-2) – xG

When a player is under the microscope, flaws are quickly exaggerated.

There were a few fans who questioned why Neto did not come out for the cross that leads to Morris’ winner for Luton, but that is grossly unfair.

Looking past the fact how easy it was for the cross to come in, it is a ball the quickly stoops down to the feet of Morris, who has easily bullied Zabarnyi to get to it first.

By the time it has reached the edge of the six-yard box, the traditional area a goalie patrols to claim crosses, it is already low enough for Morris to pull the trigger.

It is beyond unreasonable to expect Neto to do any better here.

What do you think of Neto's performances? Let us know in the comments below.

Images courtesy of PA Images, Sky Sports, and Richard Crease