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Bernd Leno makes a bold claim about Manuel Neuer

Bernd Leno, Manuel Neuer, Germany
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The Arsenal goalkeeper faces a long wait for his big moment in the German team, but feels it can’t be helped with such a quality rival.

Bernd Leno has no qualms over playing second fiddle to Manuel Neuer in the Germany pecking order as he rates the Bayern Munich man as the best goalkeeper of the last three or four decades.

It’s a bold claim indeed. But if anyone has a stake in it, then Neuer would undoubtedly be one of few candidates worthy of the honor.

The 34-year-old’s career has soared since swapping Schalke for Bayern in the summer of 2011. He’s won countless club honors, become captain for both club and country, won the World Cup, and finished inside the top-three of the 2014 Ballon d’Or poll.

His experience and continued ability to thrive at the highest level, meanwhile, have kept him firmly in Joachim Low’s set-up for Germany.

The Mannschaft boss has ousted several big names recently, including Thomas Muller and Jerome Boateng, to the pave way for new young talents to make their mark. But Neuer remains the exception.

“Of course it’s not easy. But I know very well who I’m dealing with in this case. I can assess that quite well,” said Leno as quoted by Goal.

“After all, I have the best goalkeeper in the world in front of me.

“I think Manuel is the best keeper there has been in the past 30 or 40 years. I don’t go crazy and try to see it positively.”

The Arsenal keeper will probably play back-up to Neuer again in Germany’s upcoming Nations League showdown away to Spain on Tuesday night.

Low’s men sit on top of Group A4 by a point from their opponents and can qualify for the finals by avoiding defeat in Seville.