The Spaniard may have left United on bad terms but he still has the ability to make logic-defying saves and will be in demand.
For the first time in 12 years, David de Gea is on the lookout for a new club. The Spaniard joined Manchester United as an inexperienced and shy 20-year-old and leaves as the club’s longest serving goalkeeper with 545 matches and a record 190 clean sheets.
He was so often United’s saviour in a turbulent era following Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement and was named their player of the year on four occasions, a record he shares with Cristiano Ronaldo. But in his final season there was a sense that he was holding the club back due to his limitations with the ball at his feet, preventing the team from playing as Erik ten Hag envisaged.He also made a series of high-profile errors, both with his feet and his hands, at crucial moments in the season, including in the FA Cup final. That ultimately led to the club withdrawing their offer of a new contract for him which had been previously agreed, bringing his long and glorious career with United to a sour end.
But as one long chapter comes to a close, a new one begins. De Gea is only 32 and has remained relatively injury free throughout his career, meaning he still has at least four more years, if not more, to give at the highest level.
Although his ball-playing abilities have come under ever greater scrutiny, he remains an outstanding shot-stopper, capable of making seemingly impossible saves. And that’s a quality that many clubs continue to value above all when they are looking for a goalkeeper.