Ter Stegen, who has made 18 appearances for Barcelona this season and has been first-choice goalkeeper at the Camp Nou since Claudio Bravo joined Manchester City last summer, had previously been limited to cup competitions.
The German has especially impressed this season, helping the club remain unbeaten in La Liga – conceding just seven goals so far. Such has been his form this season that Ex-Barcelona player Xavi believes him to be one of the best goalkeepers in the world.
“I think he’s more or less on the same level,” he told Bild, when asked about comparing Ter Stegen to Neuer.
“He is currently one of the best goalkeepers in the world. He plays at a top level, a good man, very professional.
“When I saw him on his first day at FC Barcelona, I was surprised by his abilities with his feet. A very, very good goalkeeper. “
Bayern Munich goalkeeper Neuer has seen his game-time seriously drop over the past two seasons, struggling with various injuries – and has not played since September with a foot injury.
How does Ter Stegen stand up against Neuer?
Playing 26 times for Bayern last season, Neuer conceded just 13 goals on the way to helping the club win the Bundesliga.
The German kept 14 clean sheets for Bayern, at an average of 0.54 per game – but that is overshadowed by Ter Stegen’s record this season.
With 12 clean sheets in just 18 games, the Barcelona goalkeeper shut out his opponents entirely at an average of 0.67 times per match. He has made 6.57 saves per goal conceded.
That is almost three saves more per goal than Neuer managed last season, with Ter Stegen also conceding goals at a lower rate, 0.39 per 90 to the Bayern goalkeeper’s 0.50.