David De Gea insists he is happy at Manchester United amid reports linking him with a move to Real Madrid.
The 23-year-old goalkeeper, who moved from Atletico Madrid to Old Trafford in 2011, has been tipped to become Iker Casillas’ long-term successor at the Spanish club.
Reports have also suggested Madrid are considering a bid as they are aware that De Gea is in the penultimate year of his contract, with a new deal yet to be signed.
But when asked about the rumours, De Gea told Kicker: “[They are] Just rumours. I'm happy here.”
United currently sit sixth in the Premier League, with 12 points from eight games, and the Spain international concedes an inconsistent start was always likely given Louis van Gaal’s desire to implement a new philosophy.
"Starting problems are quite normal under a new coach with a complete new concept,” De Gea insisted.
“That's a process and Van Gaal always says that we will improve, but it takes time. But without a doubt, United have to reach the Champions League again."
De Gea also praised Sir Alex Ferguson for protecting him during his early career at United.
"It was a difficult time but Sir Alex always backed me. He saved me from criticism and was patient until I was ripe for United,” he continued.
"Today I'm thankful for that [the criticism]. That made me stronger. Goalkeeper is tricky position. Mistakes are human. It's about being up to that. If you make mistakes you will have to improve. Now I'm better."
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