Erik ten Hag shares the importance of David de Gea in the Manchester United squad
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has hailed goalkeeper David de Gea for the role he plays in the team. The Dutch head coach feels the Spaniard’s knowledge helps the side be more solid at the back.
De Gea has come under fire in recent years from fans. The 31-year-old had a period where he was inconsistent. However, the Spaniard seems to be back to his best.
Speaking to the club media about De Gea’s importance (h/t Manchester Evening News), Ten Hag revealed the 31-year-old was highly involved and vocal in setting up the defence. The Spaniard also brings a lot of nous to the table.
“That is clear – his experience helps us a lot.
“He organises and he leads the back four. It’s really important to give the team the right mentality and the attitude to win games.”
De Gea made his way to the Old Trafford side in 2011. While his initial seasons were marred by mistakes, he quickly gained the trust of the fans. Eventually, the 31-year-old developed into one of the best shot-stoppers in the world.
However, there was a point where supporters felt that De Gea was losing his edge. With the return of Dean Henderson in the 2020/21 season, the Spaniard’s position as the number one looked under threat.
But De Gea convinced people of his quality once again with his displays in the previous campaign. The 31-year-old saved us on many occasions. The Red Devils’ backline looked shaky last season and the Spaniard prevented further embarrassment.
Under Ten Hag, De Gea initially evidently found it difficult. The Dutch manager has seemingly emphasised the goalkeepers to play short. However, that is not something the 31-year-old is known for.
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Fans have been left with their hearts in their mouths when De Gea gets the ball in open play. However, his shot-stopping abilities, which were evident against Liverpool and Arsenal, make him a shoo-in for the spot in between the sticks at United.