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Marc-André ter Stegen: Best in the World, Second-Best in Germany?

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How can a keeper so good continue to be a backup in the national team?

FC Barcelona v AS Roma - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final Leg One Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

Marc-André ter Stegen is a beast. His double-double-save performance against Sevilla is just the latest in a long list of heroics. His distribution from the back is amazing. Is he the best in the world?

I think there’s definitely an argument for that. Jan Oblak might have something to say about it, ditto a few others, but there are only so many who can challenge him.

Barcelona’s shaky defense is a product of the entire team lacking the ability to shut down opponents, but rarely is it the German’s fault. And often, Ter Stegen is forced to make up for a deficiency or mistake that another teammate made.

Despite all that, Ter Stegen remains Germany’s backup keeper. Manuel Neuer, who indisputably was the best keeper in the world when the Germans won the World Cup in 2014, remains the starter. He’s Germany’s captain, and Bayern Munich’s captain. He holds a lot of weight in both locker rooms.

But with Germany struggling in nearly every match of late, does Ter Stegen deserve to start? Either way, one’s thing for certain: Barcelona are very lucky to have him as their #1.