Barcelona looking to test 18-year-old American goalkeeper

Date:

Barcelona US goalkeeper #31 Diego Kochen looks on before the start of the Spanish league football match between FC Barcelona and UD Las Palmas at the Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys in Barcelona on March 30, 2024.
Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images

Certain positions at FC Barcelona are far more reinforced than others for next season. The Catalan club may have options in certain positions, but others are hardly as reinforced. To curb this problem, Barcelona are looking at both external and internal options at their disposal.

For instance, the need for a backup goalkeeper is seen as important. Marc-Andre Ter Stegen, already aged 32, is one of the key figures in the team and is considered a guarantee for FC Barcelona moving forward. However, the reality is that his time at the club will not be eternal either.

While the German goalkeeper is contracted to Barcelona until 2028 and has the full faith of his compatriot and new coach Hansi Flick, he will not be around forever. As for his immediate backup, Inaki Pena is seen as a reliable option who still has a contract until 2026 and has enough first-team experience to be useful.

However, Barcelona do not wish to let their youth goalkeepers go to waste either. For this reason, as highlighted by Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona are looking to make sure that 18-year-old American goalkeeper Diego Kochen ends up getting more chances to prove his quality.

Whether it be through first-team training sessions or friendly appearances, Barcelona want Kochen to prove his worth to the team. While he will still mainly look to help out Barcelona Atletic, he also has the chance to feature more regularly for the first team in terms of squad selection if he proves himself to be worthy.

In the long run, Kochen could prove to be the successor to Ter Stegen that Barcelona needs. For now, however, he will likely compete with the quality of Ander Astralaga, aged 20, to fight for the position of becoming Barça Atletic’s number-one choice between the sticks. The first team, at least in terms of immediate objectives, remains a long-term goal for the youngster.

Raafay Humayun
Raafay Humayun
Raafay Humayun is a life-long fan of FC Barcelona and an avid enjoyer of all things Blaugrana. Having fallen in love with the club for the way they defined football for him, he now spends his time watching games, analyzing the happenings in them, and digesting any and everything related to his beloved Catalan club. He also writes as an author for Barca News Network hoping to deliver the latest updates to his fellow ‘culés’.

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