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The Danish goalkeeper has stated that he believes he was first choice before he picked up an injury that ruled him out until last month, and believes he now commands more respect

Manchester Untied goalkeeper Anders Lindegaard has warned his team-mate David de Gea that he is ready to battle for the No.1 spot next season.

After De Gea's shaky start at Old Trafford, Lindegaard had an extended run in the first team, picking up clean sheets in his first five Premier League games before sustaining an ankle injury that ruled him out of contention until the end of the season.

But when asked if he thought he had established himself as the first choice last year, Lindegaard was unequivocal about his form.

"Yes, definitely," he told reporters. "I think I played six or seven games in a row, and I think that speaks for itself.

"I believe I can become No.1 because if I don't believe it then no-one else can believe in it. I will never be at United just to sit on my money. I want to deserve the money I earn, and i want to deserve it by playing.

"I never saw myself as a straight No.2. I think I have more respect now compared to 12 months ago.

"I went through a very hard preiod personally in terms of football before we went on the tour becuase I didn't play ang games and I didn't feel the respect that I have to feel from my team-mates before that - not necessarily because it wasn't there but it's just the feeling you have yourself.

"It's definitely different now. I feel the respect and I feel as though I've proved myself. I feel I've put my name on the list of good players."

Lindegaard admits that he wonders about what could have happened, had he not been injured last season, and stated that he was "very disappointed" to miss out on Euro 2012 with Denmark.

"That's difficult to answer but I was on a good run and doing well," he added. "I believe England hasn't seen the best of me, there is more to come and I was slowly getting towards my best.

"I just twisted my ankle during training. It was very simple and very stupid.

"I always try to come back earlier than the doctors said was possible, and that paid off in a negative way in the end because I got a setback or two and I honestly haven't been really ready until the middle of the Euros.

"That was very disappointing but I can use the disappointment for something positive, remember what I did and remind myself that I have to do something again that I've done before and I know how to do it.

"I've had a very short vacation which I would never dream of complaining about because I spent six months not doing anything, just trying to push myself through a hard period both mentally and physically.

"I'm glad that they didn't give me a longer vacation, and picked me to go on the tour."

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