Manchester United select Jasper Cillessen as leading target to replace David de Gea


Manchester United have reportedly selected Barcelona goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen as a leading candidate to replace David de Gea should he depart the club.

The Red Devils exercised an option in De Gea’s contract to extend his present deal until 2020 but there is no sign of an agreement regarding a new contract beyond next summer.

As things stand, De Gea will be able to negotiate a free exit to overseas clubs from January, unless United cash-in during the present transfer window.

And, according to the Daily Record, Barca stopper Cillessen is high on United’s list although he is not the outright first choice at this point.

The Holland international has also reportedly been the subject of interest from Benfica, having had to play second fiddle to Marc-Andre ter Stegen for the majority of his time at the Nou Camp.

The 30-year-old arrived in Catalonia from Ajax for €25million (£22m) in 2016 but has only made 30 appearances for the club, the majority of which have been in the Copa del Rey.

De Gea reportedly wants his status as United’s best player reflected by an equivalent contract, something the club are wary to agree to because of the difficulties Alexis Sanchez’s inflated wages have caused to the squad.

Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid continue to monitor the goalkeeper’s situation and United may consider selling him to fund an ‘aggressive squad rebuild’. 

De Gea was voted as the Premier League’s best goalkeeper in five of the past seven seasons and was voted United’s player of the year for four straight seasons between 2014 and 2018. 

He has struggled this past season, however, with a series of high profile mistakes including costly errors against Barcelona in the Champions League and against Chelsea in the Premier League.

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