David de Gea has been lavished with praise by Spain’s manager after he won man of the match in their 3-0 victory over Holland.
He was in inspired form and made three crucial saves to keep Holland out as Spain secured their semi-final spot.
The 22-year-old’s third consecutive clean sheet in the U21 European Championships means he is yet to concede a goal with only two matches left to play.
And Spain’s manager Julen Lopetegui was effusive in his praise for De Gea and called his performance against Holland nothing short of ‘sensational’.
“We try to keep the ball and defend and attack with it, and also to get the ball back when we lose it,” he said.
“We’re happy not to have conceded but apart from the quality of the team overall, David was sensational in two or three incidents, we have to recognise that.
“The whole team has a brilliant attitude when we don’t have the ball but I’m only moderately happy as the next game will be completely different.”
“He is one of the best goalkeepers in the world. He saves a lot of attempts and knows how to play with his feet which gives us a feeling of security.” Marc Bartra
His save from a ferocious free-kick was the pick of the bunch with only his fingertips keeping Holland from scoring.
United fans have already grown accustom to seeing De Gea pull off “Daves Saves” and his shot stopping ability is up there with the best in the world. Alongside that, his physical presence has already dramatically improved and he now commands his own six yard box.
He has come a long way in just two years and with performances like this on international duty with Spain, it won’t be long before De Gea becomes #1 for Spain’ senior side.
It isn’t just manager Lopetegui that recognises De Gea’s performances as U21 team-mate Marc Bartra labelled him as one of the best goalkeepers in the world in a recent interview with UEFA.
“He is one of the best goalkeepers in the world. He saves a lot of attempts and knows how to play with his feet which gives us a feeling of security,” he said.
De Gea gave United fans that sense of security all season with his 537 minutes without conceding only topped by Edwin van der Sar’s record setting 1311 minutes block out.
With every passing game, De Gea’s confidence improves and I hope that Spain can go onto win the tournament so that his year can keep getting better. He has had the taste of victory with United’s Premier League triumph and winning the U21 European Championships would cap off what has been a memorable season for De Gea.