Three replacements for Barcelona keeper Victor Valdes
With Victor Valdes leaving the Camp Nou - here's a look at three possible replacements
Victor Valdes announced last week that he doesn't intend to sign a new contract at Barcelona, putting the Catalan club in a bit of a predicament as to how to replace the Spanish stopper.
Having come through the famed La Masia youth academy, it will be a huge loss to the Barcelona dressing room. But, will it be a blessing in disguise for Tito Vilanova's side?
Here is a look at three possible replacements for the Spaniard:
David de Gea:
When De Gea moved to Manchester United he was seen as a replacement for the retiring Edwin van der Sar, and after an up-and-down first season for the Red Devils, has firmly established himself as one of the best keepers in the Premier League.
De Gea showed all his shot stopping ability on the weekend against Tottenham, making a string of world-class saves. The attribute that may attract Barcelona most is the confidence he shows on the ball, and the ability to distribute accurately.
After costing United £17 million, price may be an issue, but seeing Barcelona's tendency to prefer Spanish born players, De Gea may just be the perfect fit in Catalonia.
Chelsea's Belgian goalkeeper is currently impressing the Spanish media on loan at Atletico Madrid. Playing for second place Atletico has done wonders for the 20-year-old, routinely pulling off phenomenal saves, starting a craze of sorts on Tumblr called 'Thibauting,' where fans take photos of themselves emulating the Belgian's saves.
Barcelona will be interested as he has been in La Liga for two seasons now, helping the capital side to a Europa Leauge triumph and challenging the established order of Real Madrid and Barcelona this season.
With Cech still at the club, Chelsea may consider selling the youngster, although his age suggests a move might be a gamble.
Marc-Andre ter Stegen:
Being touted as the next Oliver Kahn is a tough assignment for any young keeper, but the Borrusia Monchengladbach starlet has been proving the comparisons aren't unjust.
Already a German international at the age of 20, he inspired Gladbach to stay in the first division during the 2010-11 season with four clean sheets in five games, and then helped the German side to qualify for the Champions League last season.
His style of play is reminiscent of the man he is frequently compared to, organising the defence with authority beyond his years and bravely rushing out for on-on-ones.
Barcelona would do well to sign the young German, as he is possibly the goalkeeper who has the highest upside of the three.
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