Manchester United will reportedly engineer a move for Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana if David de Gea leaves the club in the summer.
The David de Gea conundrum at Manchester United is showing no signs of a happy resolution anytime soon. The Red Devils are trying to convince de Gea to sign an extension and but are reportedly laying a succession plan in place, should the Spaniard leave the club. According to The Sun, Ajax star Andre Onana has emerged as a potential replacement.
David de Gea has so far rejected all offers from Manchester United, who are reportedly set to table another contract offer in hopes that the Spanish international will agree to it. But, de Gea has only one year remaining on his current deal and should he prolong his contract standoff, Manchester United would be better off listening to offers in the current transfer window than run the risk of losing their star player on a free transfer.
Arriving at Old Trafford as a young but promising 21-year-old, the Spaniard would go on to earn the nickname ‘Van der Gea‘ and has arguably been the best performing Manchester United player since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson.
The 2018-19 campaign though, was far from his best. The 2018 FIFA World Cup had already left a sour taste in de Gea’s mouth. But, his errors at club level became more prominent in the recently concluded season, with Manchester United conceding a club record 54 goals in the Premier League.
Despite his declining form, de Gea is still a revered figure among the Manchester United fan base and at the club as well. There has been strong interest from PSG while long-term admirers Real Madrid might re-enter the scene as well.
PSG have bid adieu to Gianluigi Buffon, with the Italian legend announcing his retirement. This leaves the club with Alphonse Areola and the returning Kevin Trapp as options at Thomas Tuchel’s disposal. The manager would love to replace Buffon with a world-class goalkeeper as the first-choice at Parc des Princes.
Andre Onana, as per the report, has emerged as an ideal option for Manchester United. The Ajax goalkeeper is a product of La Masia and has been the first-choice for Ajax for almost three seasons now. Onana was named the Cameroonian Footballer of the Year for 2018, was in the Eredivisie Team of the Year in the same season and was also named the Best African Goalkeeper in 2018.
Onana has kept 16 clean sheets, conceding just 27 goals in the Eredivisie, with a total of 26 clean sheets in 55 appearances in all competitions. The Ajax goalkeeper was recently rewarded for his performances with a new contract in March, 2019. But, there has been speculation surrounding Onana’s future at Ajax, who have seen many of their players being linked with top clubs after a stellar 2018-19 campaign.
Onana is reportedly valued at £40 million, which would prove to be bargain if the goalkeeper ends up truly replacing de Gea. United have also been linked with Jan Oblak, who is looking for a move away from Atletico Madrid and reportedly favours the red half of Manchester.
But, the Slovenian will cost United considerably more than Onana’s reported valuation. With Manchester United set for a summer splurge to plug other holes in the squad, they could look for a pocket-friendly way of replacing de Gea.
Manchester United’s priority still seems to be David de Gea’s retention. But, should de Gea insist on not agreeing a new deal, the Red Devils could cash in on the superstar, with Onana a likely candidate to replace the Spaniard.