Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea has said that uncommitted first-team stars are free to leave the club this summer.
The Spaniard had an outstanding individual season. He ended up making the third-most number of saves (121) in the Premier League.
Despite his efforts, the Red Devils could only finish sixth in the standings with 58 points, 13 adrift of the Champions League places.
Speaking after the 1-0 loss at Crystal Palace, De Gea said that he would like to forget the season and be 100 per cent ready for the next.
He told BBC Sport’s Shamoon Hafez: “I want to forget this season and be 100% ready for the next season and be positive.”
“It has been horrible, a very bad season in all ways, it has been very tough. It is time to rest and prepare your minds for next season.”
He went on to fire shots at his teammates. Amid talk of unrest in the dressing room, De Gea insisted that unhappy players can leave.
The Spaniard added: “Ones who want to stay, stay at the club. Ones that don’t want to stay go out. You don’t have to stay here.”
United are set for a huge squad rebuild this summer. It is already known that Nemanja Matic and Edinson Cavani will leave on free transfers.
There will be several more departures. Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata, Lee Grant and Paul Pogba are among those whose contracts expire on June 30.
Incoming boss Erik ten Hag may also not want to work with players that are not committed. De Gea is certainly not one of those at the moment.
The Spaniard’s future was a big topic of speculation last summer after going through a number of seasons where his form was pretty average.
He was culpable to making high-profile blunders and there were serious questions whether he should continue as the club’s number one.
However, the 31-year-old has answered those critics in sublime fashion over the past 12 months where he has hardly put a foot wrong.
De Gea should start next season as the first-choice keeper, but has much to prove with his average distribution and reluctance to make high claims.
Playing out from the back and commanding the box are key attributes that Ten Hag prefers in his shot-stoppers. De Gea struggles in both aspects.
De Gea will get the chance to prove himself to Ten Hag next term, and only time will tell whether he can be part of the Dutchman’s long-term project.
Stats from Transfermarkt.com
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