x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

David De Gea out to earn respect at Manchester United

The 21-year-old Spaniard insists it is part of a goalkeeper's lot to receive criticism when any kind of mistake is made.

David De Gea says everyone makes mistakes and wants to move on with his career.
David De Gea says everyone makes mistakes and wants to move on with his career.

David de Gea, the Manchester United goalkeeper, has no intention of letting his mistakes bother him.

The Spain Under 21 stopper endured an up and down start to his United career following an £18 million (Dh102.6m) summer move from Atletico Madrid.

However, De Gea appeared to have settled into his role until Saturday, when his failure to collect Morten Gamst Pedersen's corner led to a surprise winner for Blackburn Rovers at Old Trafford.

Now he is under the spotlight again, but De Gea insists it is part of a goalkeeper's lot to receive criticism when any kind of mistake is made.

He told Inside United: "Let's face it, all keepers make mistakes once in a while, and none of us like it when we do.

"It's well known that the style of play here is rather more physical, and as a goalkeeper you've got to be right on it. You've got to be attentive all through the match.

"The players coming at you can shoot from any angle, and they can shoot from distance.

"There's also a lot of crosses from the sides, a lot of high balls and aerial play. So, you've got to get in there, and block and stop shots being taken."

On Friday, Sir Alex Ferguson said De Gea would play against both Blackburn and Newcastle United, tonight's opponents, even with the Spaniard's deputy, Anders Lindegaard, on top form having kept six successive clean sheets since conceding once on his seasonal debut against Benfica in September.

No matter what the challenge to his starting spot, De Gea's long-term plan remains to stay at Old Trafford for many years.

"I have every intention of spending many years here at Manchester United," he said. "I want to become a great United keeper, and I want to earn and deserve the respect I hope to get. I want to help United make history."

Phil Jones, his teammate, was crticial of United's performance against Blackburn, but says the way his side reacted to the 6-1 hammering by Manchester City in October stands them in good stead to bounce back from Saturday's defeat. The response to United's only other league defeat was eight wins from nine.

"Never for one second did I think we weren't good enough," the defender said. "The way we bounced back from the Manchester City game was unbelievable.

"Not everyone thought we would. But that is what Manchester United does best; prove people wrong. When the chips are down, you see who the real fighters are. That's the beauty of Manchester United."

Alan Pardew, the Newcastle manager, is relishing the chance to take on United, but says comparing any other manager to Ferguson is just unfair.

Asked if the Scot is the benchmark for all other managers, he said: "He isn't really, because he's just ridiculous. Something like 50 trophies - you just can't possibly imagine getting yourself into a position to win that many.

"But in the terms of the way he handles his club, and the way he runs his club. That's what we all aim to do."

Midnight, Abu Dhabi Sports 3 & 5