De Gea plays down United link

Published May. 26, 2011 9:58 a.m. EDT

Atletico Madrid keeper David De Gea has denied reports he's agreed to join Manchester United and insists any decision on his future is on hold.

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson spoke in glowing terms about the 20-year-old earlier this week and speculation in both England and Spain has suggested De Gea would complete a switch to Old Trafford in the next couple of weeks.

But the Spaniard has refuted claims a deal has already been struck and wants, instead, to focus on the upcoming European Under-21 tournament in Denmark which gets under way on June 11.

De Gea's lawyer released a statement to Spanish news agency EFE which read: "News has appeared in various media outlets today that Atletico Madrid's David De Gea has signed for Manchester United. I hereby notify you that it is not true a deal has been signed."


The statement added: "De Gea will not consider the contract extension offer from Atletico or any other offer until June 30 when he has finished his commitments with the Under-21 national team."

Ferguson has earmarked De Gea as the long-term successor to Edwin van der Sar, who will retire after Saturday's Champions League final against Barcelona.

Speaking after Gary Neville's testimonial on Tuesday, Ferguson told the club's official website: "We've been working on it [De Gea transfer] for quite a while. We identified him quite a while back as one we should go for.

"He's a young goalkeeper, very quick, good composure, presence and an outstanding replacement for Van der Sar.

"We were looking for the same type of qualities as Edwin, because the one great quality Edwin always had was his composure and organisational ability.

"With David De Gea, he is very similar that way."

Atletico, who finished this season in seventh spot in the Primera Division, remain keen to tie De Gea down to a new contract with his current one running until 2013.