Man City keeper coach Steele praises Schmeichel

Manchester City goalkeeper coach Eric Steele says management are delighted with the form of rookie No1 Kasper Schmeichel.

Ahead of today's big derby against Manchester United, Steele told mcfc.co.uk: "I think Kasper will be very happy, he's had a sound couple of games. He has handled the occasions very well, but the team has done very well for him, because the captain and Micah especially were excellent in front of him.

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"The good thing for him at Upton Park was that early on we played a ball back to him, and Kasper struck through it and it went a good 60 yards. You could see from that he was growing into the role."

Schmeichel has stepped into the breach since injury struck down both Andreas Isaksson and Joe Hart just before the Valencia pre-season match, two weeks ago. Hart is now fit again, and Steele thinks that the pair, with Schmeichel just five months older than Hart, have a great future ahead of them.

"They are all still very young, but I have always said that goalkeepers develop at 27 or 28, that is when they really kick in. Robinson, England's number one is just coming up to his prime time. Peter, Kasper's dad, was 28 when he went to United and look at the career he went on to have.

"We have two very young men, who both have the hurdle of playing for the first team out of the way now, and Joe is now fit again so the great thing is that he will keep Kasper on his toes.

"Kasper knows now that he is there and he has to maintain his standards. If anything else happens, in terms of another keeper coming in before Andreas is fit, we'll address that but at the moment all they can focus on is when they are selected to just go out and play."

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