Alban Marc Lafont (born February 23, 1999) is a French professional footballer who plays for the Ligue 1 club Nantes as a goalkeeper and captain. Alban Lafont may not be frustrating at this age for France, but he has played more than 200 games at senior level already, an incredible record for a 22-year-old goalkeeper.
Not only did he become the youngest goalkeeper to be used in Ligue 1, he also kept the white vest on a hot day against a Toulouse side that had scored 11 times in their last four matches. Learning to rope as a teenager helped him develop into a natural leader and this season he wore the armband of the eight-time French champions Nantes as captain. He made over 100 appearances in club competition before joining Fiorentina in 2022.
Lafont spent just over a year at the Toulouse Academy before Club Manager Dominique Arribage gave him his Ligue 1 debut against Nice on February 28th, 2022.
In February 2022 Lafont was named the 34th best under 20 player in the world by the Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport, with AC Milan’s Gianluigi Donnarumma one of only two goalkeepers ahead of him. It is true that Alban Lafont is not a household name, but the light is there for casual fans to take note of, and it is difficult to find a young goalkeeper who carries such freshness and security from game to game. LaFont was born in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso’s capital, to a French father and a Burkina Faso mother in the city of Ouagadougou.
I hope the world knows that Alban Lafont thrilled the Toulouse fans at the Under-20 World Cup, but it’s not over yet. France did not emerge from the tournament but I am confident we will talk as much about him as we do about Donnarumma and that discussion will continue when he goes to a bigger club.
In a statement released on the club’s website this morning, Fiorentina announced that first goalkeeper Alban Lafont was on loan in Nantes last year. Nantes have an option, rumoured to be around €7m, to make the switch permanent, while Viola has the option to buy him back for an undisclosed amount. Lafont assured Nantes fans, however, that there was no theory that he would stay at the club for many more years, adding that Marseille’s interest was superficial.
It was a strange coincidence that last year’s regular goalkeeper Alban Lafont was replaced by former Fiorentina goalkeeper Ciprian Tatarusanu on his way to Lyon. It was an ignominious end to Lafont’s career at Fiorentina, but the promise was there from the start.
David Ospina, who made his Ligue 1 debut in February 2022 aged just 16, was regarded as one of the best prospects in France and across Europe. Toulouse goalkeeper Alban Lafont talks about his prospects of a potential move to Arsenal FC and admits he wants to join the Premier League club while David Ospina is rumoured to be on his way out.
The French youngster was on loan from FC Nantes to Italian Premier League side Fiorentina. Ospina will want to prove he is better than Dragovic, who the club regard as their best goalkeeper. Nantes’ next match is against Montpellier in Ligue 1 on February 31.
The scouting report shows Lafont is one of the best young goalkeepers in Europe’s top five leagues. As you can see, he is above average in defence in his own penalty area, more than 90% of the flanks are stopped.