When David de Gea first arrived at Manchester United he bought a lot of heavy weight on his shoulders as he had to justify his hefty price tag and as well as fill in the large boots of the great Edwin van der Sar.
In De Gea's first game for United against West Brom, he made a memorable error, causing concern from the club's supporters. While there was never a doubt about De Gea's technical ability, there were always issues regarding his fragile frame structure and whether this will be a cause of concern against the physical style of play adopted in the Premier League.
This physical style of play was played by Stoke City and exposed the weakness of De Gea against set pieces. In that game, the fragile nature of De Gea body structure was bought to the forefront by the Peter Crouch's header, which equalized for City and led to a two- point drop in the title race. Even though De Gea made some outstanding saves in that game, it does not take long to go from hero to zero in a match.
Critics focus tend to focus on the goalkeeper's blunders and not the saves that prevent things from being worse. De Gea started the season with some problems, and there were confidence issues, as well as questions about his eyesight. De Gea's slow start earned him his share of critics.
But since then he has has made a solid comeback. Many seem to forget that Sir Alex Ferguson made a mistake last time around when the great Peter Schmeichel retired and he took two or three goalkeepers to fill in as a replacement until he found van der Sar.
The likes of Massimo Taibi and Mark Bosnich failed to pass the test. Some began to wonder if Ferguson may have given up on De Gea too soon after a defeat to Blackburn in December.
For any player, in any position, confidence is the key. Of the goalkeepers with more than 10 Premier League appearances this season, De Gea has the best saves-to-shots ratio at 79 percent.
A strong No. 1 lays the foundation for title challenges and trophies. United took a gamble by signing a relative novice to step into the role mastered by Peter Schmeichel and Edwin van der Sar.
But De Gea has silenced many critics and has made a sharp comeback. He has at least proved his critics that he has the mental edge for what it takes to don the No.1 jersey for an elite squad like Manchester United
The club has made a comeback and so has De Gea. It is no secret that if or when the club moves on to win their 20th title, De Gea will remembered for his efforts.
It might be still early to annoint De Gea as a great goalkeeper, but he seems to be moving in the right direction.