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David de Gea signs 12 month contract extension

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Oh no

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League
Get me out of here.
Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Here is the good news: David de Gea has signed a new contract extension with Manchester United.

Here is the bad news, and it is much longer. De Gea has had his contract extended by the club for another 12 months, and there could be reason to think that he won’t be at the club for even that long.

The likelihood is that United have activated the deal because they know they are going to have to sell him in the summer. If they did not extend his contract by a year, then he would have been free to sign a pre-contract agreement with a foreign club and leave for nothing in the summer.

De Gea has been linked with Real Madrid before, and his girlfriend lives in Spain, meaning he has often considered a return to be closer to her. However, they have signed Thibaut Courtois from Chelsea in the summer, meaning a move there is much less likely.

His best options for now appear to be Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus. Neither of them have a long-term, world class option in goal and both of them can offer David de Gea regular league titles with little competition from the league. At United, he stands almost no chance of winning anything important in the next few years.

Perhaps most importantly, both the sides are looking to build and compete in Europe, and adding the best goalkeeper in the world would dramatically improve them. The problem for United is not money - a wage of £300,000 a week is thought to have been agreed long ago, after all. The difficulty is there is no reason for De Gea to stay if the club evidently refuse to match his ambition.

Chris Smalling is in negotiations for a new contract at the club. Marcos Rojo has refused to leave, and United’s most recent rumoured target is someone called Eder Militao, who has played for about three seconds in Europe. If De Gea was going to sign a new deal, he would almost certainly have done so by now. The extension is a reason to worry, and nothing else.