Manchester United icon Edwin Van der Sar has insisted that David de Gea can still improve despite being widely regarded as the world’s best in his position.
The Spaniard was voted the club’s best player of the season once more and it’s a credit to his ability and form that he’s able to win it ahead of more attacking players who perhaps would get more recognition.
De Gea was almost wholly responsible for United’s good defensive record last season and was deservedly voted though Romelu Lukaku and Jesse Lingard also made a case to be voted.
Van der Sar though, who arrived at Old Trafford as an already experienced goalkeeper, still had advice to pass on to the former Atletico Madrid man.
There’s not a lot David could improve on as he’s already seen as a pretty complete goalkeeper but the Dutchman is not wrong in the assessment of him.
According to Goal, Edwin said to MUTV: “I couldn’t imagine how well he has done. He was a very young goalkeeper when he came, replacing me, but he and also the coaches have put in a lot of work to make him the goalkeeper he is now.
“Eric Steele first and, after, Frans Hoek with Louis van Gaal. He is performing really well. The next step is to be more demanding from his defenders and also to play a little bit more out of his goal but [in terms of] his reaction saves – nobody makes better saves than David De Gea.
“Yes, these are areas he can work on but he’s 28 [later this year] and I was 34 when I came to United. So he still has a lot of time to improve and the level he has now is an immense high.
“Maybe he can find another thing to add to his game and the goalkeeping coaches find another thing to work on to set himself as the proper number one in the world.”
Being demanding and having good command of the box is a trait that normally develops better with age but some goalkeepers have it naturally while others don’t.
It’s fair to say De Gea isn’t that type of player but he can certainly still improve in that regard to make himself an even better goalkeeper.