Man Utd waiver over offering David de Gea new contract as wage bill spirals


Manchester United are weighing up whether to trigger David de Gea’s contract option after their wage bill reached a Premier League record £384 million for last season. 

De Gea, who turns 32 in six weeks’ time, has nine months left on his current deal but United can extend until 2024 by informing the Spain goalkeeper. They are currently assessing their long-term plan and a change of No 1 could bring the likes of England and Everton’s Jordan Pickford into the frame.  

United announced earlier this week that their salaries have increased by £61.6m from the previous year, with Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to the club and high-profile arrivals of Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane accounting for the rise of 19.1 per cent. They also made a net loss of £115.5m. 

During the decade since he helped United win their last league title, De Gea has been an important player during their Champions League qualifications and triumphs in the Europa League, FA Cup and EFL Cup. It earned him a fresh contract in 2019 worth in excess of £350,000 per week, although that was reduced after United failed to finish in the top four last season.  

United now have a decision over the coming months over extending his deal by another year or allowing one of their key first-team players to leave on a free transfer, with any replacement likely to earn significantly less given the current market values. His form in the next phase of the season is the opportunity to make a compelling case to stay. 

De Gea started the season poorly with mistakes at Brentford but has since played his part in four straight victories in the Premier League. While he has been guilty of errors during almost 12 years at the club, he has also been a valuable player for United at times when the team have struggled. 

United manager Erik Ten Hag backed his goalkeeper publicly after the Brentford mistakes, insisting: “I am convinced that he can do it.” United also sent England goalkeeper Dean Henderson to Nottingham Forest this season and then signed Martin Dubravka as back-up to De Gea before the window closed.  

Pickford, 28, has clubs carefully monitoring his situation at Everton as he will have just one season left on his contract at the end of the campaign. He is also a homegrown player, which appeals to clubs, and returned to his best form earlier this season in the draw against Liverpool before being struck by a thigh injury.



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