Xavi elaborates on Barcelona’s decision to sign a goalkeeper in January

Barcelona has announced that they will not be seeking a replacement goalkeeper in the January transfer window following Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s recent back surgery. The German goalkeeper has been sidelined for the past three games and the November international break due to lower back pain. Reports suggest that he will be out of action for approximately two months after undergoing surgery.

Manager Xavi has expressed confidence in the team’s existing goalkeeping options and does not see the need to make any short-term replacements. “It’s not an option to sign a goalkeeper. We’re confident with what we have. We trust Marc will recover soon,” he stated ahead of Barcelona’s La Liga clash against Girona.

The decision for Ter Stegen to undergo surgery was not taken lightly, as the back problem was initially being managed on a week-to-week basis. However, the choice was eventually made for the club’s second captain to have the operation, which was performed at a clinic in Bordeaux.

In Ter Stegen’s absence, Inaki Pena, a former Barca B stopper, has been given the opportunity to step up as the first-choice goalkeeper. The 24-year-old, who was promoted to the first-team squad last season, kept a clean sheet against Atletico Madrid in his last outing.

With Pena moving into the starting role, Ander Astralaga, who began the season as third choice, has been elevated in the pecking order. Additionally, 17-year-old Hungarian talent Aron Yaakobishvili and American import Diego Kochen have been given the chance to be part of the matchday squad.

Despite Ter Stegen’s absence, Xavi remains optimistic about the team’s ability to overcome the challenge and continue performing at a high level. Barcelona will rely on the depth of their squad to navigate this period without their first-choice goalkeeper, with the coaching staff and players rallying behind the makeshift goalkeeper options.

The club will closely monitor Ter Stegen’s recovery progress and is hopeful that he will return to action sooner rather than later. In the meantime, the team’s goalkeeping department will be entrusted to Pena and the emerging talents, who have been given the opportunity to prove themselves on the big stage.

As Barcelona prepares to navigate the upcoming fixtures without Ter Stegen, the entire squad is focused on maintaining their competitive edge and delivering strong performances in his absence. The team’s ability to adapt and thrive despite the absence of key players will be put to the test in the coming months as they continue to chase success in domestic and European competitions.


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