De Gea explains early return to pre-season

Wednesday 11 August 2021 07:00

Experienced Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea has explained why he reported early for pre-season training - to set an example for our young and ever-improving squad.

Like many of our international players this summer, the Spaniard was afforded an extended break owing to his participation at the European Championship. 

The 30-year-old enjoyed some quality time with his partner and their young daughter, before joining Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s squad at the recent week-long training camp in Scotland. 

Our national-team players have all been returning at different times and for a variety of reasons, but David admits he was particularly keen to come back early as one of our most senior professionals.

“Yes, I think you have to set an example,” David explains in our exclusive interview, when asked about his return.

“I’ve been here a long time and I’ve always tried to show the right example to everyone, to get in early and always be here with my team-mates, to keep contributing. 

“I feel great, really strong, both physically and mentally, and I’m eager for the season to get under way and for us to start well. We all have to be united together, all of us at 100 per cent, and yes, it’s a vitally important season ahead.”

Reflecting on his first week of training, De Gea continues: “It was great, the whole squad going to Scotland and being able to spend a few days together ahead of the start of the season. 

“I think it went really well, bonding together as a group is always good, and the sessions there were very intensive, long and productive and I think the team is in great shape. We need to start the league campaign on the right foot and go all out for everything.”
After that week of hard training, De Gea played a full match in last Saturday’s 4-0 win over Everton at Old Trafford and he was delighted to keep a clean sheet against Premier League opposition.

David happily admits he is in fantastic shape and explains the arrival of his daughter during the second half of last season has had an immeasurably positive impact on his life.

“I’m in great shape both physically and mentally,” he says. “The birth of my daughter has made me really happy and motivates me a great deal. As I say, this has to be a very important season for us.”