| 6.2°C Dublin

Van Gaal was 'not so sure' of keeper De Gea

REAL Madrid keeper Iker Casillas said he would "welcome" the arrival of Manchester United star David de Gea at the club next season.

De Gea has been strongly linked with a move to the Bernabeu and even though that would put the long-serving Casillas under more pressure for his place, the Real man says he has already suggested to club president Florentino Perez that the club should make a move for de Gea.

"Florentino once asked me if it were up to me, which keeper would I sign. I prefer Spanish keepers - Sergio Rico, Asenjo and De Gea. Right now, De Gea is the expert out of the three," said Casillas. "If De Gea does come here, he'll be welcomed."

Meanwhile Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has admitted he was initially uncertain about de Gea's goalkeeping. Van Gaal scoured for goalkeepers during the summer transfer window and United were linked with Argentina's World Cup finalist Sergio Romero and Kenneth Vermeer.

And despite an unconvincing start to the season in which he conceded soft goals against Swansea, Leicester and West Ham, De Gea recovered and was named in the Premier League Team of the Year.

"He has made very good development this year because in the beginning I was not so sure of him," Van Gaal admitted. "But now he is fantastic and has saved us a lot of times."

De Gea (left) is only the fourth United player to win the Player of the Year award in successive seasons, following Ronaldo, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Roy Keane.