Football

Pundit claims Solskjaer has obvious answer to pivotal title-winning question

Former Premier League goalkeeper David James believes that Dean Henderson should continue as Manchester United’s first-choice stopper going forwards.

David De Gea has proved one of United’s best signings since his arrival from Atletico Madrid in 2011. Since joining, he has racked up 441 appearances and 155 clean sheets. However, the quality of his services have faced increasing scrutiny since the Spaniard’s 2018 World Cup campaign.

Alongside Jordan Pickford, he amassed one of the worst records for errors leading to goals in 2019/20. Meanwhile, he faced criticism from one Man Utd legend for failing to save the crucial penalty in last season’s Europa League final.

As a result, doubt about De Gea’s future has also emerged. Henderson replaced him as the No. 1 for Premier League matches towards the end of last term.

He mostly put in solid displays and a top goalkeeper – as Gary Neville has pointed out – is a cornerstone for closing the gap to champions Manchester City.

According to ex-Prem star James, Henderson has earned the right to remain between the sticks for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

“I would go Henderson, he’s 23 and at Premier League level he’s obviously shown that he can perform, with Sheffield United and also now a number of occasions with Manchester United,” the pundit told Goal.

“There’s some getting used to playing for Manchester United, which is slightly different to playing for Sheffield United, but the capability that he’s already got and the potential that he has is far greater than what David de Gea offers.”

James stressed that while De Gea remains a solid goalkeeper in his own right, he will not get any better as he enters deeper into his thirties.

“De Gea isn’t a bad goalkeeper, it’s not about that,” he said. “I just think from a manager’s perspective, you’re looking at where the club’s going to go forward.

“De Gea has been phenomenal for Manchester United, but to stay performing at that level is so difficult.

“I think with the Dean Henderson there’s an opportunity there for Manchester United to go forward.”

Henderson has earned his place in the England Euro 2020 squad alongside Pickford and Sam Johnstone.

De Gea, meanwhile, is in Spain’s squad alongside Unai Simon and Robert Sanchez.

De Gea has transfer belief

Despite speculation that De Gea could leave United, one report claims that the stopper has ideas of his own.

Indeed, he reportedly believes his future still lies at Old Trafford beyond the summer.

He is also reportedly of the belief that he will be once again installed as first choice.

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