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Ter Stegen came to FC Barcelona from Borussia Mönchengladbach in the summer of 2014.

Ter Stegen came to FC Barcelona from Borussia Mönchengladbach in the summer of 2014. | BETINA GARCÍA - THE PLAYERS' TRIBUNE

It’s no wonder Marc-André ter Stegen feels at home at Barça. His sense of humility is the personification of one of the Club’s core values.

A striker in is early childhood, Ter Stegen “loved scoring goals.”

“It’s what made me happy,” he says. But one day, when a teammate of his, the goalkeeper, got a bloody nose, everything changed.

“Our coach needed someone else to go in the goal, but no one else would,” Ter Stegen explains. “So in I went.”

Fast forward to today: Ter Stegen is having unquestionably the finest season of his career and, arguably, one of the best seasons ever for an FC Barcelona goalkeeper.

 

But, in between, there is a gripping personal story of an ordinary childhood replete with personal anecdotes that morphed, over time, into a dream come true.

To Ter Stegen, leaving Mönchengladbach to come to Barcelona was like leaving behind his identity. But, like everything the 25-year-old has achieved in his life, he had to figure things out in his own.

Now, happy in Barcelona, his second home, Ter Stegen has had an epiphany.

“I wear the Barcelona colors with pride,” he says. “But it’s more than just football to me. This city, these fans … you never feel like you’re out there alone. You can’t be. It’s just not how it works here. You can’t turn inward. You can’t just figure it out on your own.”

Read 'THE ROAD TO BARCELONA,' Marc-André ter Stegen's article featured in The Players' Tribune!
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