It is not unfair to say that Manchester United would have been a lot worse off over the last few years if it was not for the performances of David De Gea. The 27-year-old took a while to settle into life at Old Trafford following his arrival from Atlético Madrid in 2011, but he has now established himself as one of the best goalkeepers in the world.
However, over the past year or so there has been a lot of speculation suggesting that he is keen on a move back to Spain to join Real Madrid. This rumour has resurfaced already this summer with some media outlets suggesting that De Gea’s agent, Jorge Mendes, has held talks with Real Madrid president Florentino Perez.
It is not beyond the realms of possibility that De Gea could leave Manchester United this summer, although the Red Devils are likely to do everything they can to keep hold of him. One player that the club have already been linked with as De Gea’s potential replacement is current Atlético Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak.
Could Oblak be on his way to Old Trafford?
If Manchester United do end up in the market for a goalkeeper this summer, Oblak is unlikely to be cheap with Atlético reportedly demanding a fee in excess of £80 million for his services. The Red Devils have shown in recent times that they are not reluctant to spend that sort of money on individual players, shown with the deals for Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku. They would also not be the only side interested in Oblak. Liverpool have previously been interested in the 25-year-old but have reportedly cooled their interest of late.
Oblak joined Atlético from Benfica in 2014 and has gone on to be very successful with the La Liga outfit. Oblak played a crucial role in Diego Simeone’s side reaching the Europa League final in which they comfortably dismantled Ligue 1 side Marseille 3-0. He may even be tempted to stay at Atlético since they also have Champions League football to look forward to next season and he is working under a manager who has faith in him.
De Gea gives nothing away on his future
In comparison to Oblak, Manchester United would demand a higher fee for De Gea. Perez is known for wanting to secure a marquee signing for Madrid every summer, and De Gea would certainly fall into that category.
It is easy to see why the ex-Atlético stopper may be tempted by a move, mainly due to Real Madrid’s recent success in Europe which has seen them win three consecutive Champions League titles.
When questioned on his future, De Gea insisted that his focus was very much on his World Cup duties with Spain.
He said: “The World Cup is important for us to deliver a good performance, for the team to do well and for things to go as well as possible.
He added: “Personally, I’m happy where I’m at, happy and at the same time I’m focused on the national team.”
Despite the fact there is substance to this speculation, it would still be a huge shock to see the Premier League’s Golden Glove winner move on this summer. However, if this was to be the case, then Oblak would be a very sensible replacement for United.