FC Barcelona goalkeeper Marc André ter Stegen has had to operate as Manuel Neuer’s back-up for the German national team for quite some time now, but the 26-year-old feels that he should be Joachim Low’s number one choice.
The Barcelona man is enjoying yet another fantastic campaign in La Liga and has started and played the full 90 minutes in all 34 of their league matches thus far. Ter Stegen has only missed one Champions League match; Barca’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur during the group stages in December.
In a recent interview with Spanish outlet Sport, Ter Stegen expressed his views on why he feels he should be Die Mannschaft’s number one keeper. When he was asked about how he felt when Low told him that Neuer would continue to be the number one, Ter Stegen struck a diplomatic, professional tone despite the disappointment he’s justifiably feeling:
Of course, you hope to play. Now my expectations are to keep improving in order to become Germany’s number one.
Reflecting on some of the mistakes that he’s made in the past playing between the sticks for Die Mannschaft, Ter Stegen said it’s always about turning those moments into a positive learning and growing experience:
Those experiences make you stronger. The goalkeeper is the last man and you can make mistakes. There are errors I’d like to forget about, or that I’d love to go back in time and change. Now I handle it better. Mistakes happen but you must keep improving.
Ter Stegen has recorded an impressive 20 clean sheets from a total of 44 matches across all competitions this season and always looks a calm, collected figure in goal for the Catalan giants. He’ll arguably face his most difficult test of the season when Liverpool travels to the Camp Nou next week in the Champions League semifinals, but if there’s any keeper capable of thoroughly frustrating Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, and Roberto Firmino, it’s Ter Stegen.
Germany does not resume EURO 2020 qualifying until June for a pair of qualifiers against Belarus and Estonia, respectively. Neuer has struggled with injury problems this season for Bayern Munich, but Low has made it clear that he still plans on having the veteran as his number one keeper. With that affirmation aside, a lot can happen in a month and the favorable match-ups could see Ter Stegen get at least one chance to go in goal for Die Mannschaft and try to stake his claim.
What does everyone think; does Ter Stegen deserve to be Germany’s number one keeper?
Does ter Stegen deserve to be Germany’s number 1 keeper ahead of Neuer?
This poll is closed