The last time the Spanish national team conceded a goal in a competitive match was on October 9, 2014.
After losing 2-1 to Slovakia in EURO 2016 qualifying, Spain has rattled off eight straight clean sheets, finishing off their campaign with a 1-0 win over Ukraine on Monday.
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The win over Ukraine was highlighted by the play of David De Gea, who made ten saves in a performance that Spain manager Vicente del Bosque labeled “brilliant.”
Despite De Gea’s heroics, Del Bosque has stated that Iker Casillas is still Spain’s number-one goalkeeper heading into EURO 2016 next June.
Casillas has been Spain’s number-one since the 2002 World Cup, captain since 2008, and is the most capped player in the nation’s history. However, many believe it is time for David de Gea to take over the reigns in goal.
After being named to the PFA Team of the Year last season with Manchester United, De Gea has carried on in great form and is widely considered one of the top keepers in the world.
Speaking after his ten-save clean sheet against Ukraine, De Gea said he knows he must still compete to earn the starting job.
I have to compete to the max. It’s true that I had a bit of luck today, but I did well and I’ve got to keep it up.
I’m in the best form of my career. I think it was a great team performance.
Iker Casillas has helped Spain win two European Championships and a World Cup title, and will go down as one of the greatest goalkeepers of his generation. However, it’s time to usher in the new generation.
David de Gea has proven to be an elite talent, and currently gives Spain the best chance of winning. Following Spain’s collapse in the 2014 World Cup, Del Bosque cannot afford another poor performance at a major tournament. If he continues to overlook De Gea, it could cost him his job.