United fans will be forgiven if they feel a certain deja vu about the latest comments attributed to Jose Mourinho, coach of Spanish Giants Real Madrid, suggesting that they wanted to sign United goalkeeper David De Gea. This kind of gossip reporting by the Spanish press, especially Marca, is usually the forerunner to a more concerted campaign to unsettle players prior to a transfer bid. In fact, it was this very same tactic that was used to pry Cristiano Ronaldo from United a few seasons ago, albeit for a world record transfer fee of £80m!
Real have previous when it comes to trying to unsettle United`s players. Remember the sustained efforts by the Spanish media surrounding the David Beckham transfer, although to be fair, on that occasion, United were actually open to offers for him at that stage.
David De Gea is a different proposition. He is just 21. The Spain U-21 goalkeeper, and touted by no other than Iker Casillas himself, to take over from him at some stage. It is likely that this will happen after the next world cup in Rio, when Casillas will be 34.
Suggestions started to appear in the Spanish press last week and were readily repeated by the London based media in the UK, that De Gea was "unhappy" with life in Manchester, citing the usual nonsense, like the weather, lack of Spanish type facilities or restaurants and so on. These are the usual lists of things that are wheeled out by Spanish journalists when trying to justify their reporting. There has been no comment from De Gea himself, nor his agent or family. Neither has there been any comment from Sir Alex Ferguson or Manchester United. It all suggests that there will be a negative campaign by Madrid and its media to unsettle the player ahead of a pre-emptive bid.
The same reports have suggested that Mourinho will also attempt to lure Hernandez away from United, with the main thrust being that he is not getting enough games at United. After scoring two this week for United, the striker went on record to state that whilst he was disappointed at not starting more games, he was happy to strive to get back into the first team on a more regular basis. This hardly sounds like the comments from someone desperate to leave?
United fans are now well versed in the machinations of the Madrid media and the antics of Real and their management in trying to tap up players whilst trying to conceal their efforts as media tittle tattle.
As I have stated in an earlier article, the only likely departure will be Nani, who has burned all his bridges at Old Trafford by refusing a contract that does not make him a £200,000 a week earner! There is no chance of that, and United have basically ignored recent attempts by the winger to resurrect contract talks.
My insider at Old Trafford has told me that De Gea`s father has made it clear that his son is very happy at United and expects to be there for years to come.853843