Sheffield United: Why Dean Henderson still believes he can be David De Gea's replacement at Manchester United, according to former Old Trafford goalkeeping coach

Sheffield United loanee Dean Henderson still believes he can be David De Gea's replacement at Manchester United, according to a former Old Trafford goalkeeping coach.

Monday, 14th October 2019, 2:09 pm
Updated Monday, 14th October 2019, 8:38 pm
England goalkeepers Dean Henderson (left) and Nick Pope warm up before the UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying, Group A match at Sinobo Stadium, Prague: Nick Potts/PA Wire.

Henderson, currently in his second season on loan at Bramall Lane, has been rewarded for his consistent performances in the Premier League this season with a call-up to Gareth Southgate’s England squad, which faces Bulgaria tonight.

The goalkeeper signed a three-year deal at Old Trafford in the summer before being allowed out on loan again, although a national newspaper suggested that the Red Devils would consider offers in the region of £20m for his services.

De Gea, the Spaniard, signed an extension of his own earlier this year until 2023, making him one of the highest-paid players in the world with a salary close to Paul Pogba’s £290,000 a week.

Sign up to our Sheffield United newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

But Eric Steele, Old Trafford’s former goalkeeping coach, believes Henderson will be his long-term successor.

“Dean has all the physical attributes you need. Plus that cockiness and confidence about him,” Steele told The Athletic. “He sees himself as the biggest challenger to David De Gea at Manchester United and I love that. Even though he is not at the club right now.

“I have no problems with that. He is doing the right thing and getting experience at a good club. He is still a young keeper. Peter Schmeichel didn’t come to Old Trafford until he was 28. David De Gea was the exception at 19 or 20. I have said this to Dean privately. He is still a young keeper.

“Knowing Dean as I do, what he will be thinking is, ‘Richard Hartis (Manchester United’s senior goalkeeping coach) and Ole Gunnar (Solskjaer), please keep sending your scouts to Sheffield United.’

“He knows he is being watched. He knows what is required. David de Gea has signed his new deal. There are some good goalkeepers at the club. Sergio Romero is talented, while Lee Grant is a very good senior goalkeeper.

“But Richard Hartis will be asking, ‘Who is going to challenge De Gea?’ I am sure Dean will be thinking he can be the number one at Manchester United.”