Marc-Andre ter Stegen was described as Barcelona’s “life insurance” as the German goalkeeper came to the rescue against Getafe.
Pedri’s goal in the 35th minute was enough for Barcelona as they ground out a 1-0 victory at Camp Nou, preserving their three-point cushion over Real Madrid at the top of LaLiga.
Ter Stegen, a sturdy presence throughout, saved brilliantly from Borja Mayoral six minutes after the goal, standing up to the Getafe man and making himself big after Pedri almost undid his earlier good work with a dreadful backpass.
Grateful defender Eric Garcia said: “Marc is life insurance with us. Everything he brings us with his footwork and then his saves, he has shown it again. He is very important for us.”
Germany international Ter Stegen said the points were “worth gold” after what he recognised was a sloppy performance from Barcelona, a week on from winning the Supercopa de Espana.
The hosts were without Robert Lewandowski due to the striker’s suspension, and it showed, with Ansu Fati not posing the same threat and struggling to impress himself on the game.
Ter Stegen, with 13 clean sheets in 17 LaLiga games this season, said: “What I try to do is always be in the game. I was being attentive and at the right moment I was able to get closer and make it a little more difficult for them.”
44 – After 17 games played in, have won 44 points, their highest tally at this stage of the competition since 2017/18 (45 – 1st at the end of the season). Trust.
— OptaJose (@OptaJose)
Quoted in Mundo Deportivo, he said: “I try to give 100 per cent, for myself and for the team. Victories like today’s make us stronger.
“It’s true that we had opportunities to close the game and we didn’t. So you have to suffer until the end.
“Perhaps in some victories you have to suffer, but when we’re 2-0 it always benefits you, and you finish the game earlier.”