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Fergie Issues De Gea Praise

Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson has reserved special praise for goalkeeper David de Gea following an impressive season to date.

The 22-year-old De Gea endured a difficult start to his Old Trafford career following a £17.8 million switch from Atletico Madrid in 2011.

Inconsistent displays and obvious frailties under the high ball led to speculation over his future as the club's first-choice shot-stopper.

However, the Spaniard's form has improved throughout his second season at Old Trafford and Ferguson believes the player will only continue to get better.

"They have all improved," Ferguson said of his backline. "The concentration has become better and the importance of the games has helped that.

"But David de Gea has developed and matured as the season has gone on. Once again he had an excellent game the other day at Stamford Bridge.

“We've seen a very progressive and developing young goalkeeper and next season he'll be even better."

Ferguson also singled out utility player Phil Jones, who has won plaudits playing in a variety of positions for United since his arrival from Blackburn Rovers in 2011.

"Jones is going to be a fantastic player, his talent is unbelievable," Ferguson continued. "Yes (his best position is centre-back) but you could play him anywhere. I think you could play him centre-forward.

"He's just that type of player, he's an animal for football. He grasps the game, he understands it. Play him right-back? Brilliant. Play him centre-midfield? No problem. Play him centre-back? Terrific.

"He's just one of those unusual players you get now and again who can play anywhere. We've not had a player like him in terms of someone who can play at that performance level since, well the closest you would get would be Brian McClair."

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