Spaniard David de Gea is enjoying a very good season with his club, Manchester United, but he is nevertheless threatened to be absent from the list of his country, which will travel to Qatar for the 2022 World Cup.
The Spanish goalkeeper proved his metal again during Manchester United’s 1-0 victory over West Ham in the 14th round of the English Premier League, after he blocked five attempts from the “Hammers” players, to keep a team on match points by winning with a goal without a response.
De Gea is one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League during the 2022-23 season, despite conceding 16 goals in 12 games since the start of the season.
But despite the large number of goals conceded by Manchester United, which makes Eric Ten Hag’s team in eighth place in the list of the strongest defense teams in the English Premier League, De Gea kept his net clean in five games, and comes in third place in this list, Behind Newcastle goalkeeper Nick Pope and Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson, the pair have come out clean sheets in six games since the start of the season.
De Gea has not guarded Spain’s goal since October 2020, due to his inability to play with his feet well, which Luis Enrique, coach of “La Roja”, considers essential in the goalkeeper.
Enrique said during media statements about De Gea’s exclusion in June 2022: “The goalkeeper has to start playing and achieve the first advantage, he must control the air games as well.”
He added: “I need a goalkeeper who brings me peace and calm, and this does not mean that those I choose will not make mistakes. Mistakes are part of football, but I choose the ones I like the most.”
Athletic Bilbao goalkeeper Unai Simon is Luis Enrique’s first choice as a goalkeeper for the Spain national team.
And by comparing the performance of De Gea and Simon, especially with regard to goalkeeper, the most important aspect in comparing the two goalkeepers, we find a relative superiority of the Manchester United goalkeeper.
De Gea and Simon played 12 games, in the English and Spanish leagues, respectively. De Gea conceded 16 goals, while Simon conceded on 12 occasions.
De Gea and Simon are equal in that they have come out with five clean sheets so far this season.
But the point in De Gea’s favor somewhat is that he saved 31 shots from Manchester United’s rivals, while Simon saved only 19 shots from Bilbao’s opponents.
But De Gea’s flaw, and Luis Enrique criticizes him, is that he is second-to-last among the Premier League goalkeepers in terms of the number of passes to teammates during the match, with 264 passes during the season.
On the other hand, Unai Simon has attempted to pass to his teammates 291 times since the start of the season, which puts him in 12th place in the La Liga goalkeeper rankings.
The difference is not great between De Gea and Simon in terms of passing numbers and building play, but the Manchester United goalkeeper is very special in savings and proves that day after day with the “Red Devils”.
With De Gea out of the preliminary list drawn up by Luis Enrique, it seems that the Manchester United goalkeeper, who until recently was the number one in Spain, will miss the World Cup in Qatar.