Why I turned my back on Atletico, for Manchester United, reveals Spaniard David de Gea

David de Gea for Spain U21

Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea has revealed how he felt when he left Atletico Madrid for the club.

It is three seasons ago since David de Gea joined Manchester United and he has developed into arguably the club's most dependable player in that time.

He left Atletico Madrid in 2011, replacing Edwin van der Sar, and has clearly proved his early doubters wrong after a shaky start at Old Trafford.

The Red Devils paid £20 million, making him the second most expensive goalkeeper in history behind Gianluigi Buffon.

At 20, he was already a Europa League winner with Atletico, but having seen Manchester United reach the Champions League Final in the same season in 2011, he recognised moving to Old Trafford as a clear step up.

In a fresh interview with Spanish magazine Minute 116, he explained his feelings when the transfer began to take shape.

"When United wanted to sign me, it was an opportunity I had to grasp. Atlético de Madrid was my club and it was very tough. But I wanted a change and to keep evolving as a player".

De Gea certainly has done that, his evolution is clear to see season upon season in his performances. 

However as he progresses, United have gone in the alternate direction, and when he joined he would not have foreseen a seventh placed finish in three years time.

Nor would he have expected Atletico Madrid to lift their first La Liga title in 30 years, such was Barcelona's aura of invincibility back in 2011.

If he had to do it all over again, whether he would make the same choices now is questionable no matter how much he clearly enjoys his time in Manchester.

United are fortunate they moved to sign him when they did, because if they waited several seasons to see how he progressed, they likely would have missed out, and Sir Alex Ferguson and his scouting team deserve real credit for identifying him as the future cornerstone or the side.

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