AC Milan ‘keeper Gianluigi Donnarumma and Lille’s Mike Maignan have been tracked along with Jan Oblak; but £103m release clause almost-certain to prove out of reach for Man Utd. David de Gea’s future may prove pivotal
Manchester United are preparing to enter the market for a new goalkeeper this summer and have been keeping tabs on a number of potential options including Jan Oblak – but the Atletico Madrid number one may prove too expensive.
United have been tracking Oblak for more than a year and recruitment staff at Old Trafford are ramping up their analysis of the upcoming market, with growing uncertainty over the future of David de Gea and out-of-contract Sergio Romero almost certain to leave.
De Gea has returned to Spain for the birth of his first child, and reports in the country have suggested the long-time United number one, who was once on the verge of joining Real Madrid, is thinking again about a permanent move back to Madrid, where his wife works regularly as a television presenter.
His paternity leave has allowed the promising England international Dean Henderson a run of games to try and establish himself as the new first-choice but, even if he proves successful, United are readying themselves to add another ‘keeper this summer.
Among the options they are assessing are also said to include AC Milan’s Gianluigi Donnarumma, who will become a free agent at the end of the season unless a new deal is agreed, and Lille number one Mike Maignan – and both may present more affordable signings than Oblak.
The 28-year-old Slovenia number one has a £103m release clause in his Atletico contract, which has two years left to run, and, after the financial impact of coronavirus, that appears too expensive for even the richest clubs in the world in 2021.
Former Atletico stopper De Gea’s idea to move back to Madrid may give United leverage, however, if his valuation can help to reduce the cost for Oblak. De Gea has at least two years left to run on his Old Trafford deal and is 30.
Henderson’s chance to show his first-choice credentials over the coming weeks will have a huge bearing on United’s movements however, with Oblak certain to want the number one jersey, and Henderson impressed in Sunday’s 2-0 victory over rivals Manchester City at the Etihad, l
Ex-United captain Roy Keane subsequently tipped Henderson to become De Gea’s successor, but only a month ago Sky Sports News reported that Henderson was becoming frustrated with a lack of opportunities, after being denied another loan to Sheffield United, and that Tottenham and Borussia Dortmund would head the queue should he need to find his chance elsewhere.
The goalkeeper market is lining-up to be a busy one this summer, with Tottenham said to be looking into options due to Hugo Lloris entering the final year of his contract and linked with Paris Saint-Germain, who also reportedly have an interest in De Gea.
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