David De Gea leaves Manchester United after a fulfilling 12 years, but where does he rank among the best Premier League players of all time?

The Spanish goalkeeper will leave the club when his contract expires as he is unwilling to honor the £375,000-a-week deal the club signed in 2019.

But the 32-year-old left with a personal highlight as he conceded the most goals in a season and just won his second Premier League Golden Glove award.

BBC Sport examines how De Gea compares to other great goalkeepers in the Premier League.


After a long spell at disappointing Manchester United, De Gea has been unable to match some of his rivals to win trophies.

He won the Premier League title in 2012/13, the last season under Sir Alex Ferguson. United legend Peter Schmeichel and current Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson have each won five Premier League medals.

De Gea won an FA Cup, two EFL Cups and the Europa League, again beaten by Schmeichel and Ederson.

Clean Sheets

Only three goalkeepers have scored more goals in the Premier League than De Gea, with former Chelsea and Arsenal forward Petr Cech leading by a wide margin with 202 goalkeepers.

Former Liverpool, Aston Villa, West Ham, Manchester City and Portsmouth goalkeeper David James is second with 169.

Mark Schwarzer, who has played for Middlesbrough, Fulham, Chelsea and Leicester, is next with 151 and De Gea with 147.

De Gea’s 17 clean sheets last season surpassed David Seaman, Nigel Martin, Pepe Reina, Brad Friedel, Tim Howard and Edwin van der Sar.

De Gea is second only to Čech and Chelsea in terms of goals conceded for a single club, with 162.


Since Opta started keeping track of the stats in 2003/04, De Gea is third in the Premier League’s saves list, but cannot be compared to previous goalkeepers.

Former United goalkeeper and current Wrexham keeper Ben Foster has topped the list with 1,248 saves in 19 years. He’s helped by his longevity and having played for underdog teams in leagues like Watford, Birmingham and West Brom.

Finland’s Jussi Jaskelainen, who played for Bolton and West Ham, is next with 1,223.

De Gea is a close second with 1,157 saves (2.8 per game) ahead of Schwarzer, Čech and current West Ham keeper Lukasz Fabianski.

Since De Gea’s United debut, his 72% save percentage in the Premier League is only behind Cech, Liverpool’s Alisson and Newcastle’s former Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope (in terms of players who have played more than 100 games).

How does he compare to other United goalkeepers?

United’s top three goalkeepers during the Premier League era are widely regarded as Danish Schmeichel, Dutchman Van der Sar and De Gea, who won the Champions League with the club respectively.

Schmeichel won the Premier League five times, Van der Sar four and De Gea once.

However, De Gea kept a clean sheet and defeated the pair by 147 points. Van der Sar has 132 and Schmeichel 128, both at other clubs as well. With De Gea and defender Phil Jones leaving the club this summer, no player has played under legendary manager Ferguson or won the league with the club.

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