Forget that whole free transfer idea, Real Madrid.
Manchester United has insured its investment in David De Gea with a new four-year deal to keep the 24-year-old Spanish goalkeeper at Old Trafford.
The highly regarded keeper was United’s Player of the Year in 2013-14 and 2014-15, and was the centerpiece in a bizarre scene this summer. Expected to move to Madrid before the transfer deadline, the clubs screwed up a last-minute deal and played a “blame game” in the media.
Now De Gea will be unable to discuss a contract with Madrid during the January window. And he’ll be able to feel confident in his spot in the Spanish squad for Euro 2016, which manager Vicente del Bosque admitted was uncertain without club playing time.
“I am delighted to be starting this new chapter in my United career. I have always enjoyed playing with these great players in front of our fantastic fans. Manchester United is a special club and Old Trafford is an ideal place for me to continue to develop my career. I’m looking forward to putting a difficult summer behind me and concentrating on working hard to improve and help my teammates to be successful.”
Honestly, this does make the De Gea saga interesting again. Is it as simple as insurance before a summer sale? Will Real and/or United hold grudges, stopping the deal for at least a year? What does it mean for each team’s chances in Europe?
Quick attempts at answers that could prove foolhardy, but we’ll try: Yes, no more than before, and not much. Keylor Navas is not too far behind De Gea, if at all, when it comes to goalkeeping, and both teams’ questions are in the defense more than the man at the back.