Manchester United have a plethora of sensationally talented goalkeepers, spearheaded by arguably the world’s best; David De Gea. However, they may also have England’s future number one in their ranks.
Dean Henderson – on loan at Shrewsbury Town for the season – has been making noticeable strides over the past year in his professional development. The 21-year-old shot-stopper has been regarded by many as the best goalkeeper in League One this season.
The level of the league is challenging in its own way and has swallowed up many young goalkeepers as they make the transition from youth to men’s football. Henderson however, appears to thrive on the testing environment.
He has become a fan favorite through superb performances, sheer enthusiasm, relentless dedication and the ability to devote himself solely to the club he’s on loan at.
Henderson’s quality hasn’t gone unnoticed either. With his contract at Manchester United due to expire at the end of the season, a vast array of clubs have hinted at acquiring the young goalkeeper.
His character is tremendously ambitious in nature, and staying at the club as third or even fourth string may not be to his liking. With David De Gea, Sergio Romero, Joel Pereira, Kieran O’Hara and even Sam Johnstone all still signed to the Reds goalkeeping contingent, Henderson’s desire to play first-team football may just force a move from Old Trafford.
The implications of such could be dramatic for United. If his development continues, Henderson has the ability and temperament to challenge the likes of Jordan Pickford and Jack Butland for England’s No.1 shirt.
Henderson is currently away on international duty with England U-21s, and the U-20 World Cup winner may feature in both the friendly game against Romania, and their Euro 2019 qualifier with Ukraine on Tuesday.
Tying down Henderson to a new contract would be the perfect scenario for José Mourinho, but may hinder his own personal development and long-term success.