David De Gea playing for Manchester United.

De Gea anticipating tough Southampton test

David De Gea knows Manchester United will have to produce an impressive performance against Southampton on Sunday afternoon, if we are to come away with all three points.

The Reds travel to St Mary’s on the back of three wins in a row in all competitions but, despite this good run of form, De Gea is expecting a tough game against the Saints, who he says are one of the most difficult teams to face in the Premier League.

“I think they are improving a lot, they are showing this season and last season that they are a good team,” he told club media. “For me, [they are] one of the most difficult teams to play against because they press very high. They play with a high tempo all the time so we need to play really well to beat them.”

Bruno Fernandes’s penalty was enough to see off West Bromwich Albion last time out in the league as we claimed our second successive league win, which was followed up by Tuesday night’s 4-1 triumph over Istanbul Basaksehir in the Champions League.

De Gea says, although confidence within the group is high following our recent run of form, the team must work on being more consistent if we want to start climbing the table ahead of what is a very busy December period.

“We’re confident, we’re winning so many difficult games especially in the Champions League where we are top of the group, so yeah, we have confidence but we are having ups and downs so we need to be more consistent in our games,” he said.

“I think it’s time to win five or six games in a row to take us closer to the top, so that’s the most important thing, to be consistent.”

United’s no.1 has himself been in excellent form of late and his solidness between the sticks has seen him concede just three in his last six outings.

The Spaniard turned 30 earlier this month and says he is feeling as fit as ever.

“I feel strong, physically [and] mentally in my mind. I signed a five-year contract last season so many years to come, so hopefully we can bring some trophies to the club,” he added.

Black Friday Collection

Looking for a bargain? Take advantage of these discounts for United Direct, MUTV, adidas and Science in Sport.

Sunday’s clash will be a poignant one as the Premier League are set to mark the sad passing of Diego Maradona earlier this week, with a minute’s applause ahead of all 10 matches this weekend, while players will also wear black armbands as a sign of respect.

“It was a shock for everyone that loves football,” David told us. “He was a great, amazing player. He had something special about him, not just in football. It was a great loss for the football family and for everyone.

“I send all my love to his family, to his friends and to the Argentinian people because they are suffering a lot because they really love him. One of the greatest players of all time has gone so it’s a really sad time for everyone.”