Manchester United might have picked up three points against West Brom on the opening weekend of the season, but this has not stopped the spotlight from falling on the Red Devils’ new £17 million goalkeeper.
David de Gea arrived from Atletico Madrid over the summer to replace the retired Edwin van der Sar and made his competitive debut for United on Sunday.
Much is expected of the 20-year-old and his performances will be crucial to the reigning champions’ title chances, particularly in the short term, given influential defenders Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand are out injured.
However, he made a less-than-convincing start to life as a Red Devil, coming off worse in a succession of aerial challenges and being at fault for West Brom’s goal.
Although United manager Sir Alex Ferguson defended his player, punters now have the chance to make up their own mind on whether the Spaniard will go on to make a lasting impression at the club like Van der Sar or if he will join a list of goalkeeping flops which includes Ricardo and Massimo Taibi.
Bwin has opened a new market which allows customers to bet on who will start in goal for Man Utd against Chelsea on 4th February 2012, with a number of interesting names thrown into the mix.
De Gea is favourite at odds of 2/5, with Tomasz Kuszczak, Ben Amos and Anders Lindegaard, the other keepers at Old Trafford, priced at 6/1, 28/1 and 7/2 respectively.
Meanwhile, Van der Sar is 40/1 to come out of retirement and reclaim the number one jersey, while longer-shots include Rangers stopper Allan McGregor (50/1), Liverpool’s Pepe Reina (66/1), Bayern Munich’s new signing Manuel Neuer (66/1), Aston Villa Shay Given (100/1), West Ham’s Robert Green (100/1) and former Arsenal stalwart Jens Lehmann (250/1).
Alternatively, punters could bet on De Gea to score a Premier League goal (not including an own goal) at odds of 25/1 or for him to impress sufficiently to start as Spain’s number one keeper in the first match of Euro 2012.
De Gea is a 25/1 outsider to displace Iker Casillas between the posts for Spain, with the Real Madrid man 3/10 favourite, followed by Reina (9/2) and Barcelona’s Victor Valdes (8/1).
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