David De Gea: We can't afford any slip-ups in race for fourth
Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea (right) has called on his team-mates not to let their grasp on their top four spot slip as they prepare to face Aston Villa at Old Trafford tomorrow.
Tough tests against the three sides above United in the table await but, after the back-to-back wins over Tottenham and Liverpool, Louis van Gaal's men are upbeat and well placed to secure the top-four spot that has always been the goal this term.
"We have to qualify for the Champions League no matter what," goalkeeper David De Gea said. "We already missed out last season, and a team like Manchester United cannot do that two years in a row."
In De Gea, United have one of the most level-headed shot-stoppers in the business. It's a trait that has helped the Spaniard enjoy another superb season - and, he feels, aided the rest of his team-mates.
"I'm a composed, calm type, which helps me in my profession," De Gea said. "As a keeper, you need to convey a sense of calm to the rest of the team."
De Gea, who played in Spain's friendly defeat to the Netherlands on Tuesday, has enjoyed working with compatriot Victor Valdes, one of the keepers who kept him out of the victorious Spain squad for the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012.
"Victor Valdes and I work very well together - I'm very happy to be with him," De Dea added. "I'm learning so much from him, not just in goalkeeping terms given his immense experience, but also as a person.
"He's a very straightforward guy with a lot of character. Moreover, he's always ready to lend a hand, trying to help out with his advice, especially during games."