Victor Valdes
Valdes is the number one candidate to replace De Gea according to Van der Sar.Getty Images

Manchester United should look no further than Victor Valdes to replace Real Madrid-bound David de Gea, according to former goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar.

Spanish newspaper Marca reported on 10 June that De Gea's £22m move to Real was "imminent" and manager Louis van Gaal is expected to search for a replacement for the club's player of the year.

Valdes has featured just once from the start for Manchester United, on the final day of last season against Hull City where the Spaniard produced an inspired display to help claim a draw.

The start at the KC Stadium ended a 14-month stretch out of the game for Valdes, who suffered anterior cruciate ligament damage while playing for Barcelona in his final season at the Nou Camp.

But Van der Sar feels the three-time Champions League winner has the "pedigree" to replace De Gea in the long-term, despite his limited outings for United last term.

"It depends whether they are looking for someone with reaction saves or someone who is commanding and a more outfield type of player," he told BBC Sport.

"If your team plays further away from goal and you have a goalkeeper who likes to protect his six-yard box, then the match will not be there.

"Barcelona played a lot away from their goal and that is something Van Gaal finds important. Valdes has a lot of experience and a great pedigree.

"If you name some big clubs in the world, United and Real Madrid are in the top five. To choose between those is great.

"[De Gea] will be a great loss for United if he leaves but the club has to move on and find a successor."