The Manchester United manager has revealed heavy doubts regarding the possibility of the Spanish goalkeeper committing to fresh terms at Old Trafford
Mourinho said that he was not confident whether United would be able to tie down De Gea to a new contract. Spain No 1 has been a constant in the United backline this season, playing in all nine of the club’s Premier League games, although his record of 16 goals conceded belies his quality and established standards.
However, United have been keen to extend his deal, as De Gea’s current contract is set to expire at the end of the 2018/19 season, though the club does have the option of triggering a year-long extension.
Back in the summer of 2015, Real Madrid had almost struck a deal to sign the goalkeeper, but because of a faulty fax machine, the transfer fell through at the last moment.
Real’s signing of Thibaut Courtois from Chelsea this summer appeared to clear a path for United to tie down De Gea for the long term, but Mourinho expressed his doubts amid rumours that both Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus are monitoring developments.
“I am not confident, but I’m also not worried,” he told Sky Sports. “I cannot find the word in English, but let’s see what happens.
“Only the club, David and his people can answer that. My comment is only that everyone knows how good he is, how important he is for Manchester United and if the club want to be better than it is and not worse, obviously it would be very important to keep David.”
In fact, De Gea had hinted in September that he would sign a new deal, recent performances and developments in the club could have thrown his decision into doubt.
“I feel really loved at his club from the fans from all the people who are for this club,” he told reporters after being asked about signing a new contract.
“I am really happy to play for this club, one of best clubs in the world, so for me really good to be part of this club.”
Mourinho himself had expressed his happiness at the prospect of De Gea committing to fresh terms in the summer.
“A goalkeeper is a player and sometimes people forget that. A goalkeeper wins points and wins titles, so he is as important as another player.”
United and De Gea get back to action on Sunday against Everton as they look to arrest a run of form that has seen them win just one of their last seven matches in all competitions.
Rumours of De Gea, Alexis & Pogba wanting out, Martial contract disputes, inability to sign top players; When will the board realize: their commercial juggernaut will atrophy & die if the football isn’t fun for the players & the club doesn’t show the ambition to win ?. #GGMU
— Aaron (@The_Weafer) October 26, 2018
Of all the business, both good and bad, that United have conducted on-field since Ferguson left, keeping hold of De Gea has been their most astute and decisive. The keeper has easily been the clubs most consistent and best player over the past five years, sometimes single-handedly keeping his team in matches, and if he does leave, it would be the most devastating news for the club, team and fans.