Who is Marc-André ter Stegen? Life in Barcelona, coffee, Catalan, and music

Marc-André ter Stegen plays in the ‘less is more’ league and enjoys the little things in life: playing with his son, an afternoon in the park, and coffee, as Mundo Deportivo reveal. The quality, the beans, the roasting, the origin, the technique… trips to the coffee world are commonplace and fascinate him.

The Barcelona shot-stopper, until the age of twelve, wanted to be a striker. A nosebleed from the goalkeeper and an ultimatum from the coach made him learn to want to become the best goalkeeper possible. He worked and works hard, a lot. He works on his body, his diet, and in the gym. He also works on his mind, getting to know himself and switching off. He doesn’t like to watch or talk about football nor did he as a child when he came back from matches with his grandfather, with whom he enjoyed watching films.

The 30-year-old from Mönchengladbach is a perfectionist and very organised; he asks to have training sessions in advance. He rejects doing for the sake of doing and likes to know why, not to question, but to learn. He does not like to improvise and always trains the same way: same exercises, same repetitions. It’s a question of routines, not superstitions.

He speaks perfect Spanish and is learning and reading Catalan. It is his demonstration of love and respect for the place where he lives. He knows the city very well, even more than many locals. He has travelled around Barcelona by metro, bicycle, scooter, and on foot, sightseeing in the centre just like the tourists who flock from all over the world.

Ter Stegen has been described as being German with English humour. He doesn’t enjoy living with questions; he is all about investigating and solving. Nutrition, travel, macrobiotics and the environment are some of the topics that, if you are in a hurry, you’d better avoid. If time is plentiful, enjoyment is guaranteed, ideally with a Flat White in hand and Lukas Graham playing in the background.

Kieran Quaile | GSFN

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