Marc-Andre ter Stegen: Barcelona’s next goalkeeper?
Born in 1992, Marc-Andre ter Stegen joined the Borussia Monchengladbach youth academy at the age of four. He was promoted to the senior team in 2010. Now that Victor Valdes is leaving Barcelona in 2014, it is believed that Ter Stegen will be his eventual replacement.
Although, there is still a season to go in Valdes’ contract but it is also rumoured that Barcelona are pushing to finalise the deal as soon as possible.
Ter Stegen is just 21 years old and he has established himself as the first-choice keeper at the Bundesliga club. He has also managed to earn praise from some of the former players like the former Gladbach keeper Joerg Stiel was quote on Goal.com:
“It’s quote clear, in the not-too-distant future, he will be Germany’s number one.”
To become Germany’s number one, Ter Stegen currently faces stiff competition from Tim Wiese, Ron-Robert Zieler, Rene Adler and last but certainly not the least, Bayern Munich’s Manuel Neuer.
On a Marca TV programme, Fulboleros, presenter Enrique Marques stated that Barcelona had already signed a pre-contract with Ter Stegen. Despite the fact that Monchengladbach will not approve of his move away from the club at least until his contract expires. But if the 21-year-old wants to move away, M’gladbach would not want him to walk out on a free transfer either.
While comparing Marc Ter Stegen with Neuer the World Cup and three-time European Cup winning shot-stopper, Sepp Maier, said:
“Marc is virtually on par with Manuel Neuer.”
The 2011-12 campaign was the best for the young German. He had not yet utlised his full potential but he was still maginificent for his club. M’gladbach conceded just 24 goals in the Bundesliga that season. It was a record that was only bettered by Bayern Munich and Juventus among the top leagues in Europe.
In that season, his side managed to do the double over Bayern – Neuer’s side – and they made a surprise fourth-place finish. Following his brilliant performance, Joachim Low called him up for the pre-Euro 2012 friendlies and he earned his first cap against Switzerland.
He went on to save a Lionel Messi penalty in their friendly against Argentina. He had just come on to the field after Ron-Robert Zieler was sent off.
Ter Stegen is showing a lot of potential and he could be the next big thing and challenge Manchester United’s David de Gea for the spot of the best goalkeeper of their time.
If the Marca TV presenter is to be believed and Ter Stegen has agreed to a pre-contract with Barcelona, than it is great news for the Cules. Some section of the Barca fans have been skeptical of keeping Valdes in goal. Even though he has managed to keep their opponents at bay on very crucial occasions, people have been critical of him over the years.
Barca managers over the years have shown faith in Victor Valdes – the likes of Frank Rijkaard and Pep Guardiola. Now that he has decided to move on to pastures anew, his replacement is a must.
Barcelona have already been leaking in goals as their central defence suffered at the hands of depth, or lack thereof. Not having a top quality goalkeeper will just make matters worse for the Catalans.
It has been made clear that Barcelona will be spending big this summer. A central defender and a striker perhaps is on the books. If they also bring in Ter Stegen this summer, it will give the youngster time to settle into a new and much bigger club.