David De Gea insists he wants to remain at Manchester United ‘for a long time’.
The 22-year-old has received plenty of criticism since his arrival in England, when Sir Alex Ferguson used £17million of his budget to lure him from Atletico Madrid. Being installed as the number one choice at Old Trafford at such a young age would be daunting enough, but that he had to replace the retired Edwin van der Sar merely added to the pressure on the shot-stopper.
Despite some high-profile errors and the competition from Denmark international Anders Lindegaard, De Gea has now firmly established himself as first choice pick for the Reds. However, this hasn’t stopped speculation linking Ferguson with signing a more experienced goalkeeper when the transfer window reopens at the end of the current season.
In turn, De Gea has been linked with a return to Madrid, the city of his birth, with Real believed to be lining him up as an eventual successor to Iker Casillas. But whilst the former Vicente Calderon goalkeeper admits that whilst he would like to return to his homeland at some point in his career, for now he is focused on winning silverware at Old Trafford.
“I know things have been said and written but I have a contract,” De Gea is quoted in The Sun. “I’m very well in Manchester. It is not just my name that appears. Madrid is my city, one day I’d like to return. But now I hope to stay in Manchester for a long time and win a lot of titles.”
De Gea failed to collect a trophy in his debut season in Manchester, save for winning the pre-season Community Shield at Wembley, as neighbours City won the title with the last kick of the campaign. This time round, it looks increasingly likely that he will get his hands on the Premier League crown, as his side lead the table by 15 points with just nine games remaining.
United are also in contention for the FA Cup, with a quarter-final replay against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Easter Monday. Ferguson side almost completely fluffed a 2-0 advantage in the initial match, yet Dea Gea saved superbly from Juan Mata in stoppage time to prevent the Londoners from recording what would have been a sensational 3-2 win.