De Gea will soon have to resume his battle with Henderson after Manchester United’s promising goalkeeper recovered from a lengthy fight with coronavirus and injury over the summer
David De Gea has warned Dean Henderson he faces a fight to dislodge him as Manchester United’s No.1 goalkeeper.
Henderson usurped De Gea as Ole Gunnar Solskajer’s first-choice keeper in the Premier League last season, after the Spaniard spent a decade as Old Trafford’s No.1.
But Henderson’s enforced absence after contracting Covid-19 opened the door for De Gea, who has started the season impressively to reclaim his former position.
But with Henderson on his way back, De Gea, 30, warned the young pretender he will fight to keep his place – just like the rest of United’s players.
“I played here with many great keepers over my career in Manchester,” said De Gea.
“People like Sergio Romero, Victor Valdes, Anders Lindegaard, great keepers at the club.
“So it’s not fighting between keepers, it’s fighting between players, we’re all fighting for our position.
“That’s Manchester United, you try to fight for your position. That’s football, that’s Manchester United.”
“I feel very well, I feel confident. I feel very happy at the club, with my team-mates, manager, staff, everyone.
“I keep training 100 per cent every day and I show my focus for the young lads to try to help them.”
On Cristiano Ronaldo’s return, the Spaniard said: “It’s great to have Cristiano back home — the experience of Cristiano is amazing, he’s a legend at the club already and it’s great to have him back. It’s massive for us.”
Also in the pre-match press conference in which journalists were physically present in Switzerland, Solskjaer discussed how his team have “grown and matured.”
The Norwegian also outlined his aims for the competition after crashing out at the group stage last season despite recording a win away to Paris Saint-Germain and beating RB Leipzig 5-0 at Old Trafford.
“The aim is to go all the way but we know it’s going to be difficult,” he said. “It always is. But we’ve added some quality, experience and youth into the squad and hopefully we are better prepared for what’s to come.
“I think sometimes you can go far with the youth as well but in some games experience will of course play it’s part, but in others, you need the youthful exuberance and courage.”
Solskjaer added: “This team has grown and matured over the last few seasons, that was always the plan — David sat next to me, Harry has been here for a few years now, Raphael [Varane] and Cristiano. We’ve learned.
“I can’t look at the squad and say we’ve played a game in midweek and we’re tired,” he continued. “Players are fitter now and we’ve been very robust over the years and improved a lot the way we dealt with the pandemic situation and the games coming thick and fast.”