Butland learning from Neuer


England goalkeeper Jack Butland has watched Manuel Neuer closely to try and improve his own performances.

Butland, 23, has been in fine form for Stoke City this season, keeping 10 clean sheets in 31 Premier League appearances.

With Joe Hart injured, he is competing with Fraser Forster to be England's number one for upcoming friendlies against Germany and Netherlands.

Butland said he had turned to Germany's Neuer, a World Cup and Champions League winner, for inspiration.

"People have put him up therein the last five or six years just because of the way he plays," he said.

"He is very imposing and he does things that make you stand back and impresses you, but it's not for everyone.

"But he has certainly led the way for keeping goal and he is certainly someone I look to take things on, but I do that with many others too."

Butland said he specifically noted how Germany and Bayern Munich goalkeeper Neuer cleaned up behind his defence.

"Everyone takes note of his positioning and how high up the pitch he is," Butland said.

"You can take things from that. As a goalkeeper it's so important to be in the right position to come and clear those through balls, to make those right decisions."