Wednesday 19 December 2018

United have to keep hold of De Gea - Mourinho

David De Gea's current Manchester United deal runs out next year, though the club hold a one-year option
David De Gea's current Manchester United deal runs out next year, though the club hold a one-year option

Jose Mourinho expects goalkeeper David De Gea to be offered a new long-term contract by Manchester United.

The most-recent deal De Gea signed in 2015, just days after a proposed £29million move to Real Madrid fell through, runs out next year, although United hold an option to extend that by a further 12 months.

Mourinho regards activating that clause as a foregone conclusion, but also anticipates United offering the 27-year-old fresh terms to ward off any renewed interest from Madrid and ensure he remains at Old Trafford into his 30s.

De Gea joined United in 2011 and has been arguably the club's most impressive player in the post-Sir Alex Ferguson era.

"The option, it's obvious that we're not going to let the option disappear," Mourinho said.

"A goalkeeper like he is and obviously a club that wants to be better and better and better, we are not going to let that year option go away.

"But obviously we are going to try (for a new deal).

"Mr (Ed) Woodward is not on holiday. He barely has holidays. Of course he's going to try to give him a contract that keeps him here for much longer than that option that of course we are going to execute.

"I just trust the board and the work they do. I don't negotiate players, I don't discuss numbers and contracts.

"I just say what is obvious. Anyone of you would say the same - David is to keep."

Mourinho may stand aside when it comes to contract negotiations, but he has once again been at the heart of another managerial spat at the start of 2018.

His row with Antonio Conte has seen both bosses trade insults, with Mourinho claiming on Friday he had now been left feeling "contempt".

Mourinho has also taken swipes at the likes of Arsene Wenger, Jurgen Klopp and Rafael Benitez in the past, but claims he garners no joy from doing so.

"I don't enjoy (them)," The United boss added.

"When I start (them) I take the responsibilities of that and I've started (them) many times.

"When I don't start it's quite funny for me to see other people on the other side acting like victims when they're not the victims. But, really, I don't enjoy. That's why for me (the row with Conte) is over."

Mourinho then pointedly made a reference to how he repaired his relationship with Claudio Ranieri.

When Ranieri was sacked by Leicester in 2017, Mourinho wore the initials 'CR' on his top at a press conference, a move Conte recently suggested made him look "fake".

"Sometimes it's my fault; sometimes it's other managers' fault," Mourinho added of his arguments.

"In my case, when I think it's my fault and I should behave in a different way, I'm the first one to apologise, like I did with Ranieri when I had the chance.

"That's when our relations went from bad to good and from good to very good because I was man enough to apologise."

Press Association

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