David de Gea is a Spanish professional football player who plays as a goalkeeper for the Spain national team and Premier League club Manchester United. He was born on 7 November 1990 in Madrid, Spain.
Regarded as a highly promising prospect in his youth, De Gea soon developed into one of the best goalkeepers in the world. He is known in particular for his exceptional reflexes, agility and shot-stopping ability between the posts.
De Gea began his career at the age of 13 playing for Atletico Madrid and rose through the academy system at the club and made his senior debut in 2009.
He was the captain of the Spain under-21 national team that won the European Championship in 2011 and 2013, and also competed in the 2012 London Olympic games.
Debut and International Career
De Gea made his International debut on 8 June 2014 when he replaced Iker Casillas for the last seven minutes of the match against El Salvador in a 2-0 friendly victory. He was selected as a third-choice goalkeeper in Spain’s final squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup but was the only member of the squad not to feature at that World Cup.
On 31 May 2016, he was named in Spain’s final squad for UEFA Euro 2016. He started their opening match against the Czech Republic in Toulouse, keeping a clean sheet in a 1-0 victory. He followed up with another clean sheet against Turkey in a 3-0 win for Spain. He conceded two goals in the next game against Croatia as Spain lost the match 2-1. Spain were eliminated in the round of 16 with a 2-0 defeat against Italy.
Rise to glory
After being promoted to Atletico Madrid's first team in the year 2009, De Gea was made the club's first-choice goalkeeper. He helped them win both the UEFA Europa League and the UEFA Super Cup in 2010.
His impressive performances attracted the attention of Manchester United, whom he joined in June 2011 for a whopping £18.9 million, a British record for a goalkeeper at that time.
De Gea got the opportunity to play for Atletico Madrid's first-team when first-choice goalkeeper Sergio Asenjo was away on international duty. He made his debut on September 2009, coming on as a substitute after Roberto was injured after 27 minutes of Atletico's UEFA Champions League Group stage match against Porto. De Gea conceded two late goals as Atletico lost 2-0. Three days later, he made his La Liga debut against Real Zaragoza.
He finished the 2009-10 season as the number one goalkeeper. He won two Man of the Match awards against Athletic Bilbao and Valencia. He started the 2010-11 in impressive fashion as he helped Atletico win the season's UEFA Super Cup. He went on to play in every La Liga match for the team as they finished seventh in the points table.
De Gea made his first appearance for Manchester United in a 3-1 friendly win over Chicago Fire on 23 July 2011. He made his league debut against West Bromwich Albion, where he received criticism for failing to save Shane Long’s goal during a 2-1 victory.
De Gea has made 234 appearances for Manchester United since he joined them in 2011. He has been their ace goalkeeper for all these years and has won them so many matches with his brilliant goalkeeping skills and saves.
In May 2016, De Gea became the first player ever to win Manchester United's Player of the Year for a third consecutive season. He also won BBC Match of the Day Save of the Season for the third consecutive year.
On 2 December 2017, De Gea equaled the Premier League record for the most number of saves in a single game as he made 14 saves in a 3-1 win against Arsenal and eventually won the Man of the Match award.
He has helped Manchester United to win the Premier League 2012-13 season, FA Cup 2015-16, EFL Cup 2016-17, UEFA Europa League 2016-17, and FA Community Shield in 2011, 2013 and 2016.
For three consecutive seasons from 2013-14 to 2015-16, he was elected as Manchester United's 'Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year’ as he became the first player in the award’s history to win on three consecutive occasions.
He was elected as 'Manchester United Players’ Player of the Year’ for two consecutive seasons (2013-14 and 2014-15).
On 18 April 2018, De Gea was selected as a goalkeeper in the PFA Team of the Year for the fifth time.