Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has reportedly decided that Dean Henderson, 23, will be loaned out from the club for the 2020/21 season instead of being brought into the first team squad to take on David De Gea, who will keep his position as the number one goalkeeper at the club. Some might look at this and see that Solskjaer and United could be making a massive mistake as De Gea has not been at the top of his game for quite a while, which could be more of a problem moving forward.
However, similar could be said regarding Henderson, who has not yet slyer for United’s first team and has spent time on loan over the past five seasons, rising a league level each time and spending the last two seasons on loan with Sheffield United, winning promotion from the Championship and excelling in his first season in the Premier League. That does not mean that the player will end up being a success at United as he would be put under the microscope even more by the media and pundits.
Solskjaer will need to ensure that he has made the right decision and it might result in Henderson rejecting a new contract at the club. During the 2019/20 season, Henderson made a total of 40 appearances for the Blades, playing 36 times in the Premier League and four more times in the Emirates FA Cup. He conceded 37 goals; 33 in the Premier League and the remainder in the FA Cup, also keeping 14 clean sheets, 13 of which were in the Premier League. It was an impressive season from the rookie goalkeeper.
The Mirror has reported that Solskjaer wants to give De Gea another chance to find his form at the club, as looking back during his time at United, especially in the first five seasons after Sir Alex Ferguson retired, De Gea has been a player that has kept United moving at times, which is also why he has won the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year four times in five seasons; winning three of them in a row. Sergio Romero will continue to be the second choice goalkeeper at the club.
De Gea made a total of 43 appearances for United this season, playing all 38 Premier League matches plus one in the FA Cup, two in the Carabao Cup and two in the UEFA Europa League. He conceded 44 goals in total, 36 in the Premier League (conceding 54 in the league the previous season) with three conceded in each of the FA Cup and the Carabao Cup, conceding twice in the Europa League. De Gea also kept 15 clean sheets; 13 in the league and one in each of the Europa League and the Carabao Cup.
Henderson has been linked with Chelsea this summer with Frank Lampard’s side looking to purchase the player. This caused rumours that the 23-year-old would demand to be the number one goalkeeper at United for the 2020/21 season or he would leave the club. However, his current contract does not expire until the summer of 2022, meaning United will retain him for two more years. If a contract extension is not reached this summer, it might well see him not end up playing for United at all, which would be a shame.
Written by John Walker