FOOTBALL NEWS

12/04/2014 15:53, Report by Ben Hibbs

Stepney lauds De Gea

David De Gea was voted ManUtd.com Player of the Month for March by the fans – his fifth award in three seasons at Old Trafford. We asked European Cup-winning ex-Reds goalkeeper Alex Stepney to assess the Spaniard's performances and progress...

To me, this award represents David De Gea's progress throughout this season as much as it does his performances in March specifically. I must say, he has gone up another notch this season. He's taken his game to another level and it's been great to watch him develop at United.

David made a fantastic double save against Olympiacos that really stood out last month. Sometimes you think he's a bit unorthodox by making saves with his feet, but more goalkeepers are starting to do it these days and it works for him, so why change it? He's done it before and he did it memorably against Real Madrid last season.

It's interesting to see how well he has done this season when you consider that the back four in front of him has rarely been the same on a game-by-game basis. He's done very well to organise the four in front of him and still keep a record number of clean sheets.

I pay close attention to him during matches and he is communicating a lot with his back four – that means a lot to the defence. He's commanding his area too, and that shows you the development he has made. His handling of the ball is excellent and he commands that six-yard box brilliantly, and that's the great thing he has brought into his game.

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