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David De Gea could remain at Manchester United for another ten years according to Peter Schmeichel

Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel has backed current United number one, David De Gea to play on at the Old Trafford club for another decade. On Monday in the Premier League, the Spanish goalkeeper made his 400th appearance for United, beating Schmeichel’s record by two appearances, still 139 appearances behind Alex Stepney.

United signed De Gea from Atletico Madrid back in the summer of 2011 after Edwin van der Sar left the club after six years, leaving a void which De Gea soon started to fill. In recent years though, his form has not been the best which has seen him prone to some mistakes but in recent matches, despite a few errors, he has improved, although those reading this will be irate at errors made against Southampton.

De Gea will no doubt be challenged by Dean Henderson, who is currently close to the end of his second season on loan at Sheffield United, helping them win promotion from the Championship last season and push to finish in the top half of the Premier League table, currently seeing them in seventh place and on the cusp of securing European football.

Schmeichel reckons that De Gea’s appetitive for silverware continues to drive him on with United not winning anything since their UEFA Europa League trophy at the end of the 2016/17 season. This season, with the league already won by Liverpool, United have a chance to lift the Emirates FA Cup and the Europa League once again. Speaking to the United Review, Schmeichel said:

“There have been trophies over the last nine years and David will want more of those before he’s done.

“He would far rather pick up a few more winner’s medals than Player of the Year trophies, I’m certain.

“David’s young and could play on here for another 10 years.”

De Gea has kept 11 clean sheets in the Premier League so far the season and is currently trailing the best goalkeeper in the league, Burnley’s Nick Pope by three clean sheets. United will be seeking to improve that before the end of the season with their sights well on a place in the UEFA Champions League next season, which will mean they need to finish in the top four of the Premier League. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer feels that De Gea needs more trophies on his CV, saying:

“I don’t think he will be happy until he wins the bigger trophies. Yes, he’s won personal awards but David is not the type to care about that. I think he wants the team to lift big as well.

“Staying at Manchester United for this amount of time and not having won more is something he will feel is a black dot in his career.”

Peter Schmeichel suggests Dean Henderson stays at Sheffield United for another season; David De Gea tough to beat for number one position

Manchester United legend Peter Schmeichel has given high flying goalkeeper Dean Henderson some advice ahead of the summer with many things for the 23-tear-old to think about for the remainder of his career. The goalkeeper has spent this season and last season at Sheffield United, proving himself in the Championship and the Premier League.

The former United goalkeeper, who helped the club wi the treble during the 1998/99 season, has seemingly run the rule over both Henderson and current United number one, David De Gea. The Spanish goalkeeper has made a fair few errors this season, including another against Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League return on Friday evening, a 1-1 draw.

This season, Henderson has kept 11 clean sheets in the Premier League and is in joint top place with Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope, who could be a rival for Henderson in the bid to add pressure on England number one goalkeeper, Jordan Pickford. Schmeichel feels that Henderson should remain patient with De Gea still ahead of him at present.

Schmeichel spoke about Henderson in detail, giving the suggestion that the player should seek to sign on loan at Sheffield United for a third season, which could bring European football, with the Blades putting pressure on United for fifth place in the league this season, which could be UEFA Champions League football if Manchester City’s ban is upheld. Schmeichel said:

“We have one of the best goalkeepers in the world at Manchester United. There’s no sign that he’s going to leave the club, why would he? He already had the opportunity a couple of times.

“In the last six years he was Player of the Year four times. He’s done fantastic but the fact of the matter is there’s only one goalkeeper in the team.

“For every youngster and especially young goalkeepers there is so much that you need to learn when it comes to the toughest end of top football like the Champions League and international tournaments.

“You have to have so much experience and I see no harm in Dean Henderson continuing playing for Sheffield United. Every day he will learn something new.”

De Gea has a contract at United will will run until the summer of 2023, with the option of another year to be added and Henderson having a contract at the club until the summer of 2022, with the option of another year to be added. It is possible that Henderson is offered a new long-term contract before he is loaned out again for the 2020/21 season. Schmeichel concluded by saying:

“I know it sounds cold but we have David De Gea, who has been so fantastic for us.

“I don’t understand why anyone would think that’s a position that needs to change [right now]. Why would you rock the boat?

“The best players will take you to the next level.”

Peter Schmeichel ‘convinced’ that Paul Pogba will stay at Manchester United this summer

Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel feels that French midfielder Paul Pogba will remain at the Old Trafford club this summer. There has been a lot of speculation linking the French FIFA World Cup winner for the last few years, linking him to Barcelona, Real Madrid and with a return to Juventus, the club he arrived back to United from.

It has been four years since the 27-year-old returned to United, a club he described as his destiny. However, the player announced that he wanted a new challenge last summer on a promotional tour of the Far East, which is something that never materialised last summer and may be stopped from happening this summer too.

Pogba returned to action after a spell on the sidelines with ankle injuries this season, the latter needing surgery and his recovering during the coronavirus pandemic, getting himself match fit over the past month or so and coming off the bench against Tottenham Hotspur, a match United drew 1-1 in, needing a win in their next match against Sheffield United.

The United treble winner feels that Pogba is ready to remain at United, possibly set out to achieve what he wanted to achieve when he returned to the club in the summer of 2016. He even thinks that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s man management skills could be a key factor in keeping the Frenchman this summer. Schmeichel said:

“I’m absolutely convinced he wants to stay. I think we’ll somebody, more of a player we saw a year ago.

“One thing is how he’s portrayed in the media for what he does and what he says himself, and another thing is what his agent is doing. And a completely different thing is what it’s really like.

“He wanted to come back to Manchester United, he wanted to come back. And he has got, like any other player at that level in the world, he’s got his pride. And I don’t think he wants to leave. I don’t think so.

“I think when Ole came, we straight away saw with Ole’s guidance and his knowledge with Paul, we saw precisely what he can give us. And that’s a lot.

“Unfortunately I don’t think he’s gotten great representation. He’s such a valuable asset so it’s great to shift him to another club, because that’s a lot of money to make.

“I think that if you have somebody telling you that in your ear at some point you’re bound to be confused. You’re a young player. All he should be content and focused on is playing.

“I hope with this period of being out of the game, I hope that with Ole’s management skills, he’s going to come back and love playing for Manchester United.”

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has created a team of leaders who are ready to be a force again, says Peter Schmeichel

Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel has stated that he thinks the confusion at his old club has finally surpassed as his former teammate, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has stated to assemble a group of ‘fearsome leaders’ to finally make the club challenge the greatest honours once more. For seven years post-Sir Alex Ferguson, United have stuttered.

United return to Premier League action on Friday evening, facing Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur in North London in a match the January signing Bruno Fernandes and newly recovered Paul Pogba could play together competitively for the first time, if the rumours of Pogba not starting the match are not true.

Schmeichel feels that the due are amongst the vocal stars in the current squad with the pair both strong minded and ready to get things done, depending on which Pogba actually turns up – I am hoping that it is the Pogba that sees playing for United as a dream and getting them firing once again, challenging the teams above them.

Schmeichel, now 56, won the Premier League five times with United before leaving the club for pastures new, which included Sporting Clube de Portugal, Manchester City and Aston Villa before having his gloves up permanently. He saw many leaders at United, including himself so could have a point here. Speaking about this, the United legend said:

“It is so nice to see all these leaders. There are four or five of them now — but it has not always been like that.

“It was just due to  lack of consistency from the top guy at United in previous years. The managers have had  different philosophies, signing different players.

“So there has been confusion over who United were  — but that is now all behind us. Some players signed in that period were probably not right for the club but I think Ole saw this and understood it.

“Fernandes has done well. What a great player. What a great personality. He comes across as a proper leader. I was at  Old Trafford when he made his debut against Wolves.

“He was giving directions, started talking to players around him, asked them to go in certain positions. Stuff you unfortunately do not see too much in modern-day football.

“And I believe the more leaders you have, the better your team  will be. Every successful team I played in had four, five, six or seven leaders and United now have a few.

“Harry Maguire has come into the club and  done well. He is club captain and  has grown immensely since he has had that responsibility. He is  a true leader.

“Fernandes has shown himself as a leader straight away, Paul Pogba has always been a leader. It is great to have him back.

“It has been a long, long season without him. You could argue the team has done really well without him — but  United is a club that wants to have the best players. He is one of the best  in the world.

“Marcus Rashford leads as well. You  see him getting more confident and what he has been doing off the pitch during the coronavirus crisis is amazing.”

It will be good to see what Solskjaer’s plans are at United. He has assembled a team capable of starting something, just needing a few more players in different positions to make it all work well. United are a work in progress but you can see the progression. Schmeichel also spoke about Marcus Rashford and what he has done whilst out of the game.

The 22-year-old has helped raise £20 million to help feed underprivileged children and has recently put pressure on the Government to continue helping to feed children on the poverty line whilst the schools are out this summer, which was initially rejected with the Government conducting a U-Turn, funding the plan instead, which is great. Schmeichel said:

“How many guys in his position have you seen do that? He has not lost touch with where he is from.

“That carries more value than the other guys we see pretend to be someone else. So, he is a leader. Fred has massively improved for United. But  Victor  Lindelof has also  done well.”

Concluding the interview, Schmeichel also spoke about Spurs, who are currently up against it in the Premier League, sitting eighth in the Premier League, four points adrift of United and looking likely, if they continue in the same for, to miss out on Europe altogether. Speaking about Spurs. Schmeichel said:

“They need to reach the Champions League. It will be easier to get  top players in. This is a developing period, rather than one having to win trophies”

Brazilian midfielder Fred has been instrumental to Manchester United’s season, says Peter Schmeichel

Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel has hailed former teammate and current manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for giving Brazilian midfielder Fred the platform to play an instrumental role at the club this season. Under Jose Mourinho, Fred did not have the best of times, seemingly scapegoated for the clubs demise.

However, since Solskjaer became the manager of the club, Fred has changed his fortunes at the club, looking like the midfielder he was tipped to be, raising his game considerably after having a long spell in the team because of injury. Schmeichel, who was speaking to CNN via Instagram Live, spoke about the Brazilian, saying:

“Fred has been, for me, absolutely instrumental in how well the club has done this season.

“He was always perfect for the club but he’s now been given playing time and the more time he’s been given, the more confidence he’s gained and for me, he’s been one of the great stories this season at Manchester United.

“Of course it’s down to Fred but it’s down to Ole for giving him that confidence. I like that.”

Ever since the start of the current season, which was delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic, which suspended world football in mid-March, Solskjaer has shown that he is willing to give chances to players who have not quite got there in terms of playability for various reasons, giving them a chance to show what they can do.

For Fred, this seems to have worked so far. This season, the Brazilian has made a total of 39 appearances, playing in the Premier League, the Carabao Cup, the UEFA Europa League, and the Emirates FA Cup, scoring two goals and four assists – all coming in the Europa League this season. Schmeichel, concluding his interview about Fred, said:

“I like the way he’s [Solskjaer] kind of introduced players that were already there but are now in the first team and are now playing well.

“He’s also brought all these values in. The players now know them. If you don’t share our values, there’s no place for you here. So you have to live up to his values.

“He’s bringing in his own culture and you can see it and it’s there and it’s brilliant.”

Peter Schmeichel told Gary Neville that he was not good enough and Steve Bruce ripped him to shreds – brutal

Manchester United legend and Class of 1992 graduate, Gary Neville has spoken recently about a torrid time at the Old Trafford club during his first season in the senior squad. The legendary right-back who helped United win eight Premier League titles, two UEFA Champions Leagues an Intercontinental Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup, amongst others.

It would seem that the young defender received a verbal backlash from goalkeeper and fellow United legend, Peter Schmeichel. Neville was just 17 at the time he made his debut on the 16 September 1992 against Torpedo Moscow in the first leg of the first round of the UEFA Cup at Old Trafford, a 0-0 draw.

Neville had replaced Paul Parker at the club after starring in the youth team with fellow graduates David Beckham, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs, although he had made the first team a long time before the others. Neville was constantly given a verbal dressing down, according to his comments, which seemingly helped his mental resolve as he did quite well.

It was not just Schmeichel who gave the right-back a dressing down, United captain, Steve Bruce was not impressed with what he saw either. You cannot blame them as they were professional footballers and seeking to return the glory days at the time, winning the inaugural FA Premier League title during the 1992/93 season. Speaking on The Football Show on Sky Sports, Neville said:

“The one that was hardest with me was [Peter] Schmeichel, he was brutal with me in that first year or two.

“Schmeichel was constant, every single day in training at me.

“He told me on the team day out, he didn’t think I was capable of replacing [Paul] Parker, nowhere near as good as him.

“It was maybe true as Parker was a very good defender.

“That back four of [Denis] Irwin, [Steve] Bruce, [Gary] Pallister and Parker had played two or three years and kept clean sheets.

“I was the first player to break into it. Schmeichel saw me as a risk and I was a risk in some ways.

“I didn’t see it as tough love at the time, I saw it as being brutal but it did toughen me up eventually.

“I realised the team wanted to win. Some days it was hard. I remember [Bruce] ripped me to shreds and I was thinking, ‘what’s going on here?’”

Neville spend 19 seasons at United and was the club captain from 2005 until 2011, replacing Roy Keane and seeing Nemanja Vidic take over from him. In total, Neville made 602 appearances at United, scoring a total of seven goals during his career, which was not his main outlet during matches, his composure, passion, dedication and aggressive tenacity was what made him the player he was.

Many may feel that Neville was bullied by his peers, this was not the case. I wonder what would have been said of social media was around back then. United were a team entering a rather successful period of the clubs history and, quote rightly, players wanted to be the best with their teammates being the best too.

Neville may have felt under the spotlight but Schmeichel and Bruce were actually giving him constructive criticism. These days, people seem to be praised for doing any job, whether they did a good job or a bad job. This is not learning or excelling. It is just expecting praise because you did a job. That is not going to make people better at all.

Many will disagree, but that is life. Not everyone has to sing from the same song sheet and not everyone will. Neville achieved something magnificent at United, winning eight Premier League titles, three FA Cups, two League Cups, three FA Community Shields, two Champions League trophies, one Intercontinental Cup and one FIFA Club World Cup, also winning 85 caps for England.

copyright: JW