Dean Henderson has signed a new five-year contract with Manchester United, with the option of a further year to stay at the club and compete with David De Gea as the No.1 goalkeeper at the club.
Henderson has spent the last two seasons on loan at Sheffield United, helping them get promotion to the Premier League before keeping 13 clean sheets in the top division last year as they secured a top half finish at the first attempt.
There was interest from Chelsea and Sheffield United about a potential permanent deal, but the Carrington graduate had made it clear that he wants to be the No.1 at Manchester United and refused to leave on a permanent deal.
The new deal keeps him at Old Trafford until 2025, with an option for an extra year essentially making it a six-year contract for the 23 year old. Reports suggest the deal is worth around £120,000 per-week which would put him among the highest paid goalkeepers in the league.
Despite that, Henderson will be competing with David De Gea for the starting spot in Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side next season if he ends up staying at the club beyond the transfer window. According the Manchester Evening News the club and player have different ideas on the coming season, with the club believing a loan would be the best option while Henderson himself wants to stay and play.
With David De Gea still having three years to run on his £275,000 per-week deal, he is expected to start the season as the No.1 choice but if Henderson remains at the club then he will be facing real competition for the jersey for the first time in his United career.
It’s believed that United would like to loan Henderson out to a club playing European football, potentially abroad, so that he can continue to play regularly and then potentially replace De Gea next year. However having been called up to the England squad, he believes that he is ready now and is happy to provide competition for places.
It seems like a win-win situation at the moment for Manchester United. As it stands, De Gea is the better goalkeeper despite his recent errors and dips in form. He is more experienced and a better shot stopper, plus he is used to all the limelight and criticism that comes with the role. While Henderson can’t get that without being in that position, it’s something that doesn’t need to be thrust upon him right now on top of the attention that would come with displacing a club legend like De Gea.
A loan would suit all parties, as Henderson would play and likely keep his role in the England side with Euro 2020 coming up next summer while United know they have him tied down for the foreseeable future. He could then return next summer with a year of European experience added to his career and really compete while United consider whether De Gea is really done at this level or whether it was just a blip.
Staying shows real character and gives De Gea a kick up the backside. Solskjær will know he has a top goalkeeper waiting in the wings to replace De Gea for any mistakes that occur and it will only boost the level at the club.
It’s a win-win for all parties no matter what happens from here on out but the only thing guaranteed is that Dean Henderson is a Red for a while longer yet.