I’m top five in the world, says Chelsea goalkeeper Courtois

Thibaut Courtois, the Chelsea goalkeeper on loan at Atletico Madrid, has said he feel as if he is one of the best goalkeepers in the world on his current form, ESPN has reported.

Courtois is first choice for Belgium and has helped the Red Devils to a comfortable qualification for the World Cup next year, with their place at the tournament sealed on Friday in a 2-1 win over Croatia in Zagreb. And while a Romelu Lukaku brace grabbed most of the headlines, Courtois made what proved to be a vital save from Mario Mandzukic to maintain Belgium’s lead.

I am in my best moment of form right now,” Courtois said. “I feel as if I am among the top five goalkeepers in the world. I have grown a lot at Atleti,” he added, “Especially last season when we won the European Super Cup and the Copa del Rey. I have made a lot of progress, above all in speed, reflexes and experience.

Courtois has been contracted to Chelsea since a 2011 move from Genk but has never played for the Blues. Instead, he was loaned immediately to Atletico Madrid, a temporary deal that has been extended until 2014, having so far made more than 100 appearances for the Spanish club.

The 21-year-old feels his time in Madrid has been far more beneficial than the possible alternative – remaining at Chelsea but acting as back-up to Petr Cech, a role that would see more time spent on the bench than the pitch. “I want to play,” he said. “I do not want to be sitting on the bench. I feel very good at Atletico and being here allows me to play in the Champions League.

Courtois has also won 13 Belgium caps, keeping out Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, despite being four years younger than the former Sunderland stopper.

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