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"I have to say..." - Neville claims Man Utd star was badly missed at the World Cup

Chris Byfield

| Last updated 

"I have to say..." - Neville claims Man Utd star was badly missed at the World Cup

Gary Neville claimed Manchester United star David De Gea would have performed better at the World Cup than Spain keeper Unai Simon.

Last night, Japan beat Spain 2-1 to go top of Group E ahead of Las Rojas and qualify for the round of 16.

It was one of the most dramatic nights of the tournament, with Spain left relying on Germany beating Costa Rica to themselves progress to the next round.

Despite the defeat, Luis Enrique’s side ultimately edged through, and will now play Morocco in the round of 16.


Spain had been cruising in the first half, having gone ahead through Alvaro Morata, but Japan bounced but with two goals in just three minutes.

Unai SImon woes

Japan’s opener was netted by Ritsu Doan, whose speculative shot from distance somehow flew past Simon in the Spain goal.



The 25-year-old, who plays his club football at Athletic Bilbao, looked to have misjudged the flight of the ball and ultimately palmed it into his own net.

After the game Neville questioned whether Simon should continue as Spain’s No. 1 for the remainder of the tournament, and insisted that Man Utd keeper De Gea would have saved Doan’s effort.

De Gea, who has chalked up 45 caps for Spain, was controversially left out of Enrique’s squad.

Speaking on ITV Neville said: “The big decision for the game is whether [Spain] stick with the goalkeeper.


“[Simon] is the one part of their game that looks like a real weak point and I have to say it starts off badly. We know they like to play out the back, we know they like to take chances and we want them to continue to do that, we're not trying to change that.

“He's got to save that (first goal). They've got Raya on the bench and they've got Sanchez.

“They've got De Gea still at home. I know he's not been brilliant these last few years, but I can't think he'd let that one in! That's a real bad one. In a knock-out game that's fatal for you.”

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: Football, Spain, David De Gea, Manchester United, Gary Neville, Football World Cup

Chris Byfield
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