David de Gea has just completed his ninth consecutive season as Manchester United’s first choice goalkeeper.
The Spaniard has won the club’s Player of the Year award on four separate occasions, the Premier League Golden Glove award for most clean sheets for the 2017-18 season, and been named in the PFA Team of the Year five times.
However, his performances have dropped off incredibly over the past two seasons that many fans were calling for his head before the end of this recently finished campaign.
The 29-year-old has made numerous errors leading to opposition goals during the past two seasons and will face stiff competition next month to earn his right as Manchester United’s number one for their season opener.
That is because Dean Henderson has confirmed he will not be extending his stay at Sheffield United beyond this season.
The Englishman has been on loan at Bramall Lane for the past two seasons, helping the Blades gain a surprise promotion to the Premier League in 2018-19 and then playing a key role in their surprise top half finish.
Henderson confirmed his departure from Sheffield United on Twitter earlier today:
It is up to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to decide whether to stick with David de Gea or give Dean Henderson a chance when the new top flight campaign starts on 12 September.
Given David de Gea’s valuation and salary it could make the decision difficult for the Norwegian manager to drop the Spanish number one. He had previously been linked to Real Madrid prior to their signing of Thibaut Courtois two years ago.
Likewise, Dean Henderson has never played for Manchester United previously and only has a single season of Premier League experience under his belt. How would he cope under pressure?
The obvious choice would to start the season with de Gea and if the mistakes continue to cost the Red Devils points then make the switch during the season. Sir Alex Ferguson did the same in de Gea’s first season at Old Trafford but Anders Lindegaard failed to capitalise on the handful of opportunities he was given.
At 23, Dean Henderson could have a long future ahead of him at Manchester United and his performances for Sheffield United in both divisions suggest he has the ability to make it at the top. Whether he will get the chance to prove that as early as next month, only time will tell.
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