Saturday 23 September 2017

Jose Mourinho signals David De Gea's season is over amid growing interest from Real Madrid

Romero (l) and Pereira (c) will replace De Gea in United's remaining matches. Getty
Romero (l) and Pereira (c) will replace De Gea in United's remaining matches. Getty

Luke Brown

There is a chance that David de Gea has played his last game for Manchester United, with manager Jose Mourinho saying he will not select the goalkeeper in his starting XI again this season.

Mourinho, who had previously announced that he was going to select deputy goalkeeper Sergio Romero for the forthcoming Europa League final against Ajax, has added that he will also likely start the Argentina international in United’s next match, away to Southampton.

He has also confirmed he will be handing a first-team debut to third-choice Joel Pereira, most likely in United’s final league match of the season, against Crystal Palace. That means that – barring injury – De Gea will not feature for United again this season.

“Joel Pereira is fantastic and I am going to give him a chance to play in one of our three remaining (Premier League) matches,” Mourinho said last week.

“We have two good experienced goalkeepers and this young boy who for me is going to be the Portuguese No 1. He was made in this club."

There is also a growing chance that De Gea will not play for United again next season, either, as Real Madrid step up their interest to recruit the Spanish number one.

In 2015 De Gea’s protracted transfer to Real Madrid fell through at the last moment – infuriating then manager Louis van Gaal – and this time around Mourinho is determined to have the player’s future resolved well before the club’s pre-season.

Mourinho is planning to ring the changes for United’s trip to Southampton, with Paul Pogba absent because of the death of his father on Friday.

Daley Blind will be among those rested at St Mary's but Marouane Fellaini will return, having served a three match-suspension.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Marcos Rojo (both knee), Ashley Young (hamstring), Luke Shaw (foot) and Tim Fosu-Mensah (shoulder) are all out through injury.

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