09/08/2012 22:06, Report by Adam Marshall

Carrick rates De Gea progress

Michael Carrick feels David De Gea is improving all the time after the latter produced an outstanding display against Barcelona on Wednesday.

The 21-year-old Spanish goalkeeper looked sharp on his first DHL tour outing, after competing in the Olympics for his country, and made a string of good saves, including an important touch on a Lionel Messi drive and a diving stop to keep out a Pedro header. Carrick, who saw De Gea at slightly closer quarters having been deployed in defence for the second half, is in little doubt that his team-mate will push on again in 2012/13.

"David just keeps getting better," he told MUTV. "We knew he would. The manager has shown great faith in him and he's getting stronger and stronger. His distribution is fantastic and he makes saves at good times. I'm sure he'll continue to do that."

In terms of his own performance, Carrick is happy to help out in defence and is feeling fully fit ahead of the 20 August opener at Everton. When asked about playing at centre-back, he replied: "It's happening a little bit more often these days. It's the third time in pre-season now but it was a good work-out for us and a proper game against really good opposition.

"Forty-five minutes for me was good. I've had four games and now that half a game so it's lot of minutes under my belt. I'm feeling really good. There are still 10 days or so until the start of the season and that's enough time to shake things up a little bit more and sharpen up a bit so we'll be ready for the Everton game."

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