Manchester United could have done without another negative storyline, but hey-ho: Duncan Castles of the Daily Record reports today that Manchester United are locked in a contract standoff with talisman David De Gea.
United want to get the Spaniard tied down to a new, five-year contract, but per the honourable Mr. Castles, he isn't close to signing it. Here are the relevant details:
The calculation is this. For the last four seasons, and five of the last six, the PFA has voted de Gea the best goalkeeper in England. For four of the past five seasons de Gea has been the Manchester United supporters’ or players’ Player of the Year. On three occasions he has taken both awards.
With that level of performance and consistency de Gea believes he should be on a par with the two highest-paid players at Old Trafford – Paul Pogba and Alexis Sanchez.
It will all likely end in the club acceding to their goalkeeper's demands, as he is simply to important to the club to countenance losing.
But perhaps this standoff would not be happening had United not signed Alexis Sanchez, and allowed their wages to inflate further. While Sanchez' transfer fee was much lower than a player of his calibre demands, that was offset by his astonishing wages. These were released in The Guardian a couple of weeks ago: Sanchez makes a basic wage of £391,000 a week, and gets a £75,000 bonus for every game he plays. And on top of all that, he is given an extra £1.1 million every year as a signing-on fee. It means Sanchez is earning about twice as much as stars that have outperformed him lately, such as Harry Kane and Mo Salah.
That Sanchez is the top earner in spite of contributing almost nothing so far was bound to provoke the agents of some of United's biggest stars, and it is impossible to see Paul Pogba and Mino Raiola vs Everyone Else outside of this context. Either Pogba genuinely wants to move, or else he is angling for better terms on his United contract.
And given De Gea has been United's best player since Alex Ferguson retired five years ago, it is entirely unsurprising that he would demand more money having seen the money sloshing around Alexis' bank account.
While Real Madrid no longer look a likely destination for De Gea, the Daily Record names PSG as a potential destination for the goalkeeper.