De Gea: The fans deserved this
Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea was proud of the team's performance and praised our supporters following Tuesday's win over Villarreal in the Champions League.
Our no.1 was in fine form back in his native Spain, producing some excellent saves on his way to keeping an impressive clean sheet against the Yellow Submarine. Second-half goals from Cristiano Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho, who netted for the first time for United, secured a win against Unai Emery's side.
When Young Boys and Atalanta drew 3-3 in the other Group F encounter on Tuesday night, that secured the Reds top spot in the group going into the draw for the last 16.
David: We’ll take confidence from this
De Gea gives his take on the Villarreal win, after a fine individual performance in Spain…
Speaking to MUTV's Stewart Gardner post-match, De Gea emphasised how important the win was for United following a few difficult weeks.
"Yeah, it’s always great to play in Spain, especially a Champions League game, good atmosphere," the goalkeeper said.
"I think it was a massive three points for us today. Especially after a couple of tough weeks, so yeah, I think we showed good team spirit today. We play against a very difficult team, they play really well and I think what we showed today… I’m very proud of the team, the staff, so I’m very happy today."
One of the match's key moments was when De Gea made an outrageous one-handed reaction save to deny a powerful strike from Manu Triqueros inside the United box. Still, after the majestic piece of goalkeeping, the Spain international remained humble when describing it, emphasising that what matters is the team.
"Yeah, I always try to be focused in the 90 minutes," our no.1 explained.
"I made the save, a couple of saves in the first half, but sometimes I’ve made some saves [and] the team has lost. Today, it was good because I made them and we win, so I’m really, really happy. But, like I say, today is about the team. The team played as a team, very good, so we deserve the points."
Highlights: Villarreal 0 United 2
Enjoy the Ronaldo and Sancho goals that booked our place in the last 16 of the Champions League...
The 30-year-old says this period has has been tough but that he is proud of how the team performed in Spain and hopes this is the start of a good set of results for the Reds, continuing at Chelsea on Sunday.
"It’s been very difficult, to be honest," he said about the recent time at the club.
"Last week, especially the last two or three days, have been tough. But that probably makes the team stronger. I think we will take confidence from today and then it’s not just today. We need to show again on Sunday when we play a massive game again [v Chelsea], so let’s see if we can keep winning games."
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De Gea also acknowledged the travelling supporters in his post-match interview, with the United faithful in loud voice at Estadio de la Ceramica.
"Yeah, for sure," he said about the fans enjoying themselves.
"Champions League nights for the fans are very special. The away fans are always unbelievable. I’m very happy for them also, they deserve a result today and, for sure, they enjoyed it."
As mentioned, our next assignment is Chelsea on Sunday, with kick-off at Stamford Bridge set to 16:30 GMT.