Manchester United aren’t in the business of selling their best players. Then again, this isn’t Manchester United anymore. Not really.
David de Gea has been far from his best this season, but is still, without a doubt, United’s best player. He has a strong argument for being the world’s number one goalkeeper and is a rare leader among United’s ranks. He has been in the PFA team of the year more times (five) than any other keeper in the Premier League era, and won the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year award more times (four) than any other United player since it was introduced in 1988.
He has saved his team’s skin countless times in his eight years in Manchester, and has been their one consistently world class presence. He is the type of player who, in normal circumstances, it would be criminal to let out the door.
But circumstances at United are not normal. Wednesday night’s 2-0 home defeat to rivals Manchester City showed just how wide the gulf in class is between the two sides, and United actually put in a pretty good performance. Had they played as they did during the weekend’s 4-0 crushing at Everton it could have been a humiliation for the ages.