Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney believes that David de Gea is the best goalkeeper in the world.
The Spaniard pulled off yet another man of the match performance as United beat Liverpool 3-0 over the weekend, and he has also made superb saves against Everton, Arsenal and Stoke.
De Gea’s form has seen the Red Devils pick up six wins in a row and Rooney believes that he is unmatched by any other keeper: “In my eyes, he is the best keeper in the world. The performances he has shown for us have been fantastic.
“He is not as tall as some other keepers but his spring and reach is really long. Sometimes in training you hit a shot and turn away thinking it has gone in and he just manages to get there. I am delighted for him."
The 24-year-old struggled in his first 18 months at Old Trafford but has since made himself an indispensable part of the team and won the club’s player of the year award last season.
Rooney believes that de Gea can taste similar success this season: “If he keeps working hard the way he is then he will have many, many years at the top. He has shown great form and some of his saves are incredible. I hope he does win some of the top personal awards but he has had a really good season.”
De Gea has only kept five clean sheets in 16 appearances this season but has had to deal with an ever-changing defence as a result of United’s injury crisis.
Are there any better?
De Gea is undoubtedly one of the best goalkeepers in the world but in Europe Manuel Neuer has been staking his claim for the title at Bayern Munich.
Neuer’s maniacal sprints off his line have proved remarkably effective in dealing with opposition attacks and his reflexes helped Germany to their first World Cup in 24 years.
Bayern’s number one is currently shortlisted alongside Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi for the Ballon d’Or award and with good reason, he has conceded just three goals in 15 appearances in the Bundesliga, keeping 12 clean sheets.
Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has also staked his claim to be the best goalkeeper in the world, his athleticism and shot-stopping ability helped Atletico Madrid to the La Liga title last season and put them within moments of claiming the Champions League against city rivals Real Madrid.
Courtois’ impressive form has continued in his first proper season at Chelsea with six clean sheets in 15 appearances as Jose Mourinho’s men lead the pack at the top of the Premier League.
In spite of his advancing age Iker Casillas has also been impressing, the Real Madrid hero has kept seven clean sheets in 13 La Liga matches to help Carlo Ancelotti’s men to a club record 20 wins in a row.