Get in De right Gea or you’ll never get out of the starting blocks….

£18Million is a lot of money for any player, its a price that seems to fit the position of a new number 10, or a tricky winger out on the left, its a price tag that comes with a lot of expectation right off the bat, for that much money, a player needs to be a game changer, a breath of fresh air for a team in need of that extra kick. It hopefully brings in an experienced head amongst the team, or someone who knows the game well to slot right into his new surroundings with consummate ease.

So when Manchester United paid £18+Million for a 20 year old, inexperienced at the highest level, not exactly fluent in English goalkeeper, eyebrows were most definitely be raised by all in the game.

David De Gea is most definitely a promising talent. Bursting onto the scene for Athletico Madrid and slotting right in as their number 1 goalkeeper, people were already seeing him as a successor to current Spain number one, Casillas. But there were those who were quick to call it premature, and in some retrospect, they were right.

Switching leagues is always tricky business, for every league is different in almost every single way. Usually we see that coming into the Premier League from abroad is difficult, for every Thierry Henry, we get half a dozen like Andy Voronin. The evidence suggests that for some, it’s too much of a change to handle, and they return after a very short spell.

Goalkeepers in the Premier League come under some intense pressure, both on their ability, and pressure from opposing teams. Direct your attention to Stoke for exam, and Mr Delap to be specific, and see how they make life so miserable for any goalkeeper, even the great ones like Petr Cech shudder at the thought of a throw in at the Britannia Stadium.

So De Gea had a lot to look forward to from the very start, throw in the fact he is the first ‘keeper to attempt to fill the gloves of Van Der Sar, that’s pressure before even kicking, or catching, a ball.

His first two appearances for United have been analysed and commented on at length, his weaknesses have been placed under the spotlight, a huge £18million spotlight at that. But let’s look at it in perspective shall we?

For the two goals against City he was at fault, no two ways about it, but Ferdinand and Vidic were beaten with little trouble by Lescott for that goal, it’s no excuse, but you’d expect more from the two experienced centre halfs’.

After that De Gea came into the game a little better, plucking a corner out of the air confidently and smartly tipping a City shot past the post.

At the Hawthorns he let in a weak, poor, effort that any keeper deals with 10/10 times in training. As the game went on, he was clattered when collecting the ball, but a corner was given, any other game and he’d have got a free kick for it, again, no excuse but something to bear in mind.

And as that game went on he got some important touches to keep the score level.

Talking about De Gea is a difficult subject, on the one hand he is only 20 years old, for a goalkeeper in the Premier League, he’s just a kid, he’ll grow into a better player. On the other hand, that £18Million price tag, and Van Der Sar’s huge shadow hanging over will do him no favours.

Ferguson obviously values him a lot, otherwise he’d not be there at all, but he better get his act together, and show the promise and talent that earned him his number one spot at Athetico, and play a big role in Spain’s U21 claiming the Euro 2011 Cup.

This is a big year for everyone at United, De Gea especially.

Only time will tell what future lies for him and United.

Dale Benton



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