The Spanish international had secured the starting berth at the start of the 2012-13 season from Anders Lindegaard, but a string of inconsistent performances and struggles (particularly in the air) had left De Gea on the outer at the club—with United potentially exploring other options.
Yet whilst the transfer rumors remain for United, De Gea has received strong backing from those at United that he is indeed the player to lead them forward this season. He's received it from none other than the manager himself, with Sir Alex Ferguson lauding De Gea's development.
He has developed and matured as the season has gone on. Once again he had an excellent game the other day at Stamford Bridge. We have seen a very progressive and developing young goalkeeper and next season he will be even better.
But the defence have all improved. The concentration has become better. The importance of the games has helped that.
After watching De Gea so far this season, there's little doubting that the goalkeeper has the skills and talent needed to become the Red Devils goalkeeper.
He might not possess the aerial strengths that come with spending years in the English Premier League, nor does he have the physical dominance that some goalkeepers have in the league. Whilst this has been the subject of much of the criticism surrounding De Gea, the reality is that his reflexes and dogged determination more than make up for those "weaknesses."
Reflex-wise, De Gea is without a doubt one of the best in the Premier League, and as he continues to develop, his ability in the air will continue to improve.
Having kept six clean sheets in a row now, the Spanish international has proven himself to be a legitimate starting goalkeeper for the Red Devils, and one that can carry them to success—as he's shown with United's probable title-winning campaign this season.
For United to turn their back on it now—when De Gea is finally starting to hit his peak—would just be craziness from the Manchester club, regardless of who they brought in to replace him.
De Gea's future is at Old Trafford for a lot longer still, and if this year is anything to go by, United would do very well to keep him there as long as possible.
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