Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea’s Old Trafford days appear to be numbered with Real Madrid increasingly confident they will get their man according to the Manchester Evening News.
De Gea is now just 3/20 to be a Los Blancos player by the close of the next transfer window, having reportedly told certain United teammates that he may not return to the club’s Carrington training complex in July.
Moreover, the fact that the Reds have chosen not to extend Radamel Falcao’s loan spell is also thought to have increased the likelihood the Spaniard will depart, with the gloveman and the striker sharing an agent in Jorge Mendes.
Louis van Gaal could soon been in need of a new goalkeeper as a result, so news.bwin.com have cherry-picked one from each of Europe’s top five leagues for his perusal.
Spain – Keylor Navas – Real Madrid
Having left Madrid minnows Levante for the bright lights of Santiago Bernabeu after a brilliant World Cup for Costa Rica, Navas has fallen victim to the club’s seeming inability to drop the increasingly haphazard hero Iker Casillas.
However, with three clean sheets in six La Liga appearances this term and a saves-per-goal average (3) that comfortably bests De Gea’s 2.17, he clearly retains his ability and, with the potential he could be included as makeweight in any deal, may represent a cost-effective solution too.
Italy – Mattia Perin – Genoa
At just 22, Perin has a bright future ahead of him, a fact not lost on Arsenal and Liverpool, both of whom were linked with an interest in the Italian during the January window.
Averaging three saves an outing to De Gea’s 2.12, he’s had ample opportunity to prove himself this term, including when starring in Genoa’s shutout home win over Juventus.
Moreover, he also boasts a mean 3.4 catches per 90 minutes, a number only our English selection (unusually tall even for a goalie) can surpass, vouching for his command of the penalty area.
Germany – Yann Sommer – Borussia Monchengladbach
The Swiss’ custodian’s heroics played a massive part as Monchengladbach unexpectedly claimed the Bundesliga’s third Champions League spot with the division’s second most-efficient rearguard.
His saves-per-goal ratio (3.5), the benchmark of a keeper’s effectiveness, is the highest among our quintet of possibles, more than half a stop-per-concession ahead of the best of the rest.
England – Costel Pantilimon – Sunderland
The Romanian hightower has been a man mountain for the Black Cats this term, averaging more clean sheets per 90 minutes than De Gea despite his desperate surroundings.
His mean staves per match played (3.32) was the highest of any keeper mentioned here, as was his dominant 3.86 crosses caught.
France – Stephane Ruffier – Saint-Etienne
Ruffier can shoulder precisely 0% of the blame for Les Verts missing out on European football on goal difference in 2014/15, despite a comical early-season own goal against Paris Saint-Germain, having kept a mind-boggling 18 clean sheets along the way.