Manchester United's Spanish goalkeeper David de Gea shunned his critics last season with countless performances for his team, helping them to win their 20th domestic league title.
Many people thought that De Gea was the weak link in Manchester United's title challenge last season, due to his first 12 months at the club when he seemed to struggle with the physical side of the Premier League - helping opposing teams to plan their set-piece tactics around him, making him an easy target in every game.
The media and pundits alike all slated how he was not Premier League standard.
The Spaniard realised he had to become more commanding in his 18-yard-box, and to also adapt as fast as possible to the Premier League .The 2012/13 season saw the Spaniard make some exceptional saves against numerous teams such as Everton, Sunderland, Man City and Real Madrid in the Champions League.
These game changing saves were proving to the football world how crucial De Gea was becoming to Manchester United's race for the title, and earning him praise from his manager and team-mates alike, week-in, week-out in the league.
The young, determined goalkeeper's outstanding shot-stopping ability, combined with his reflexes, vision and distribution skills, are all areas in which he has improved on since his move from Atletico Madrid. He is also now more commanding at the back, more decisive, and his physical size has vastly improved.
Combining all of his improved skill, De Gea kept 11 clean sheets on his way to receiving his Premier League winners medal in May this year.
David de Gea was also named in the 'Premier League Team of the Year', ahead of Joe Hart and Petr Cech, proving he has immensely improved since 2011.
The Spaniard has all of the necessary attributes to become the worlds best goalkeeper within the next five years. He is only 22-years-old, distinctly younger than the current goalkeepers who are reportedly 'the best in the world' such as Manchester City's Joe Hart, Real Madrid's Iker Casillas, Chelsea's Petr Cech, Bayern's Manuel Neuer and Juve's Gianluigi Buffon.
In my opinion, by the time David de Gea is 26, he could be the best goalkeeper in the world ahead of Joe Hart and Manuel Neuer.
His performances last season proved all doubters wrong, and can only benefit the young keeper's confidence for next season.
His contributions over the last campaign were as critical as the goals scored by Robin van Persie in the quest for the title. His effort and athletic ability were the foundations for his team's success last season.
Write for GiveMeSport! Sign-up to the GMS Writing Academy here: https://bit.ly/12evFlH
DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms