Helping hand for De Gea but Ferguson will not drop him

 

Sir Alex Ferguson acknowledged today that coaching work was needed for goalkeeper David de Gea.

The Manchester United manager is likely to select the 22-year-old to face Fulham in the FA Cup fourth round tomorrow at the end of a week in which his error which allowed Tottenham Hotspur their equaliser in last Sunday's Premier League game has justifiably been questioned by the club's former captain Gary Neville.

"He had a fantastic game and was 30 seconds away from that," said Ferguson. "I remember talking about how well he played and then 30 seconds from time the ball park changes. It is unfortunate for the lad but he has to deal with it. We will help him.Outfield players maybe make 20 mistakes in a game but [goalkeepers] are in a crucial position. We are OK with him."

Ferguson, whose club have announced that Crystal Palace's Wilfried Zaha will be joining them in July, was reluctant to engage today on topics as diverse as the Eden Hazard ballboy incident and Rafael Benitez's claims that the United manager exerts undue influence. But he did make it clear that he had robustly defended his right to question a match official's performance, in his response to the Football Association's request for his observations on how he conducted himself before the cameras at White Hart Lane on Sunday evening.

"That is what I have put in my letter exactly," Ferguson said. "But you know the FA. You never know. It is one of these things. We are high profile. I think the press plays its part too; they panic when the press [write things]. Some of the headlines were 'Ferguson may be charged by the FA'. You [journalists] have your part to play in that because the profile of me is such that the FA naturally panic as soon as the press criticise them. That is why they have sent me a letter. Whether I think it is unfair or not doesn't matter to them really at this point. I just think it is more about me than what I have said."

The Palace co-chairman Steve Parish said the rapid conclusion of the Zaha deal would enhance his side's Championship promotion prospects. Zaha was at United's Carrington training ground yesterday for a medical ahead of the £15m transfer that will see him loaned back to Palace for the rest of the season.

"I'm pleased that we can put it all behind us and concentrate on trying to get into the Premier League," Parish said. "It's a good deal for us and the player – if Manchester United are interested in your player then you have to find a solution. It's been hard for him to go on the pitch every week with his future in the balance. The way things have gone is an elegant solution."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...