Sir Alex Ferguson fears Bolton's direct game may unsettle David de Gea

• Ferguson in talks with coaches about resting goalkeeper
• Anders Lindegaard could replace De Gea at Reebok

Sir Alex Ferguson is sufficiently concerned about the aerial threat of Bolton Wanderers to consider resting his young goalkeeper, David de Gea, when Manchester United travel to the Reebok Stadium on Saturday.

Uppermost in Ferguson's mind is that Bolton may play a deliberately direct game to unsettle a 20-year-old who is still learning about the Premier League and has been guilty of conceding soft goals in three of his four matches for United.

Ferguson is going to discuss the matter further with his coaching staff and will not make up his mind until the morning. However, his thinking goes in tandem with Anders Lindegaard's remarks to the Norwegian press this week that he would get his first start of the season "maybe faster than you think".

Ferguson has already decided that De Gea, the £18.3m summer signing from Atlético Madrid, is the club's first-choice goalkeeper, sticking by the Spain Under-21 international after his mistakes in the Community Shield against Manchester City and, most notably, the league game at West Bromwich Albion.

Lindegaard has demonstrated he is a capable deputy, one of the club's more impressive performers on the pre-season tour of the US. He is taller by a couple of inches and that is in Ferguson's thinking as he prepares to face a Bolton attack spearheaded by Kevin Davies, a player whose physical approach has long been a source of irritation to the United manager.

Ferguson, nonetheless, spoke on Friday as if De Gea would start, going as far as to say the referee, Andre Marriner, needed to give the Spaniard more protection from the opposition players. "I don't think he got the protection he should at West Brom but he dealt with that part very well. He made a mistake with the goal but, other than that, on every occasion they put the ball on top of him he dealt with it. As I said about [Peter] Schmeichel, he had the same experience and saw it through and it won't do [De Gea] any harm."

Davies has already spoken of giving the teenage defender Phil Jones "a going over" but Ferguson said he was unconcerned.

"He [Davies] is a difficult customer, a physical forward, we know that. He uses his physique well but Phil Jones has shown he is quite capable of dealing with different aspects of opponents.

"I'm sure he must have played against him last year and he probably played against the likes of [Didier] Drogba and [Peter] Crouch. It's not as if he's lacking experience of playing against players of that type. I'm sure he will be all right."

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