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National team: European Championship goalkeeper: For DFB legend Maier it can be “only Neuer”.

National team: European Championship goalkeeper: For DFB legend Maier it can be “only Neuer”.

Who should be in goal at the home European Championship, Manuel Neuer or Marc-André ter Stegen? For former DFB goalkeeping coach Sepp Maier, the answer is clear. He draws a comparison to Oliver Kahn.

For former DFB goalkeeping coach Sepp Maier, there is only one answer to the question about the German number 1 at the home European Championships this summer. “Only the Neuer,” the 1974 world champion goalkeeper told the German Press Agency when asked whether he would choose Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer (37) or Marc-André ter Stegen (31) from FC Barcelona in his previous role would.

Before his 80th birthday this Wednesday, Maier justified his decision with the great international match and tournament experience of the 2014 soccer world champion Neuer. He also drew a comparison with his former goalkeeper protégé Oliver Kahn. “Manuel Neuer was injured for a long time after his skiing accident. But now he’s fit again. You can’t just say to a player who has so many international matches and has had so much success with the national team and also in the club, you’re not playing “Otherwise Neuer will be like Oliver Kahn in 2006,” said Maier, who trained the national goalkeepers at the DFB from 1988 to 2004.

As a goalkeeping coach, Maier became world champion in Italy in 1990 with team boss Franz Beckenbauer. Six years later, national coach Berti Vogts won the European Championship title in England. In 2004, Maier lost his job because the then national coach Jürgen Klinsmann accused him of clearly voting for his club protégé Kahn in the goalkeeping duel with Jens Lehmann.

Neuer has been in the DFB goal at all major tournaments since 2010

“Kahn was number 1 for years – and he didn’t play at the World Cup because the national coach thought so. Because he wanted to put Jens Lehmann in the goal. They took out the regular goalkeeper. It would be the same now with Neuer,” said Maier. “Of course he’s getting older. But for me Neuer is still number 1 in Germany, logically. You can’t forget everything. He was a world goalkeeper. He has 117 international matches. He’s played everything, World Championships, European Championships,” argued Maier.

Neuer has been in the DFB goal at all major tournaments since the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Competitor ter Stegen only played in the 2017 Confederations Cup win in Russia, when the then national coach Joachim Löw did without Neuer.

After Neuer’s broken leg following the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, Ter Stegen was number 1 in the DFB team in the absence of the long-time captain. National coach Julian Nagelsmann had already announced Neuer’s DFB comeback for the first international matches of the European Championship year in March against France and the Netherlands.

Source: Stern

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