'Great' De Gea won the game for Manchester United – Van Gaal

Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao scored the goals at Old Trafford but the Spanish goalkeeper’s remarkable heroics late in the game held off a recovery from Everton

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal lauded David de Gea after the goalkeeper’s late heroics helped his side to cling onto a 2-1 Premier League win over Everton on Sunday.

The Spaniard kept out Leighton Baines’s first-half penalty at Old Trafford before producing a string of stunning saves in the dying moments as the Red Devils held on to secure a second successive victory for the first time under Van Gaal.

Radamel Falcao scored the all-important goal, his 62nd-minute strike coming after Steven Naismith had cancelled out Angel Di Maria’s opener.

But it was De Gea drawing plaudits from Van Gaal, who told BT Sport: “When you save a penalty and make three magnificent saves in the dying minutes, you are great. We won the game because of that.”

Di Maria’s performance was impressive, too, with the Argentine continuing his stunning form since joining from Real Madrid in August.

United boss Van Gaal added in his post-match media conference: “When you set up and score goals, what more can you ask?

“When you do that every week – and he does – we have to be very pleased.”

Van Gaal knows there is more to come from his players, however, continuing: “I have told the players we are not playing well but we are fourth in the table. What is coming when we play well?”

The Dutchman also confirmed that Luke Shaw is unlikely to add to his ongoing injury problems, suggesting that the left-back – withdrawn after 70 minutes – was suffering from a “dead knee”.

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