Man United transfer rumours: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's first choice to replace David De Gea

West Brom goalkeeper and Man United target Sam Johnstone

Manchester United are keeping tabs on West Brom’s Sam Johnstone who has been earmarked as David De Gea’s replacement, according to ESPN.

What’s the latest news involving Sam Johnstone?

Manchester United are one of a few Premier League teams monitoring the situation around West Brom’s goalkeeper. Tottenham and West Ham are also interested, but the Red Devils will be particularly keen as they look towards a future without De Gea.

Johnstone graduated through the club’s academy and earned a £6.5m switch to West Brom in 2018 after failing to make an appearance for United’s first team, but he's reportedly open to returning to Old Trafford. 

Impressive displays for relegation-threatened West Brom have put him firmly back on the radar for his former club, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer making him his first choice to replace De Gea this summer.

ESPN have reported that despite an asking price of £18m, a sell-on clause in the previous deal to take him to the Hawthorns could lower their price.

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Is David De Gea definitely leaving this summer?

The Spaniard has seemingly been replaced as United’s first choice goalkeeper.

Solskjaer looks to have placed his faith in Dean Henderson and deemed De Gea as surplus to requirements, with the former holding down a spot in United's Premier League XI since the beginning of March. 

According to the Mirror, De Gea is set to leave the club and United are even willing to pay a large sum to force him off of their hefty wage bill.

What are Johnstone’s stats this season?

Johnstone has been a consistent presence in the West Brom goal this season and his shot stopping has been one of his most eye-catching attributes for the struggling side.

The 28-year-old has a save percentage of 71.2% in the Premier League this season in comparison to just 67.5 for De Gea which ranks him 17th in the standings.

The statistics would make Johnstone a suitable replacement for De Gea as Henderson’s potential backup, as a second choice that possesses enough ability to step in when required.

Have Man United been linked with any other goalkeepers?

According to reports from Sky Sports, Manchester United could enter the market for a more premium option such Atletico Madrid’s Jan Oblak or AC Milan’s Gianluigi Donnarumma.

Whilst Oblak offers a status as one of the world’s best, his release clause of £103m would make him out of reach for almost any club.

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The prospect of Donnarumma would be exciting as the Italian is one Europe’s most promising talents and would also be available as a free agent with his contract set to expire this summer.

Any incoming goalkeepers would depend on the departure of De Gea, which is looking more likely by the day.

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