Why hasn’t David de Gea found a club yet? A desire to live with his popstar wife ruled out Saudi Arabia and Spanish clubs aren’t looking for ‘save-makers’… but wage demands are NOT an issue after Man United exit

Betis don’t want David de Gea. At least that is what the club have briefed after rumours circulated earlier this week that they were lining up the former Manchester United and Spain goalkeeper.

Perhaps it’s not entirely surprising. They have two top keepers in the highly-rated Rui Silva and the massively experienced Claudio Bravo. 

The latter is just coming back from injury and the former is out for four weeks. But after the next international break both will be fit and wanting to play – there is no room for a third senior keeper.

Perhaps what is more surprising than Betis not wanting De Gea is that so far – despite the fact that he is a free agent – no one seems to want him.

The 32-year-old ought not to be past his peak. Silva and Bravo at Betis are 29 and 40 respectively. Goalkeepers peak later and play until they are older.

David De Gea had been linked with a move to Real Betis but the club have shut those down

The former United goalkeeper and his wife Edurne are thought to be keen to remain in Spain

The former United goalkeeper and his wife Edurne are thought to be keen to remain in Spain

De Gea could be seen working on his distribution

The Spaniard also ran several fitness drills

De Gea has been training by himself in recent weeks as his search for a new club continues

De Gea’s problems are two-fold: the market is flooded with goalkeeping talent – at least for the clubs he wants to move on to after 12 years at Manchester United. 

And for many coaches he is seen as a save-making keeper who hasn’t developed other facets of his game such as being able to sweeper-keep or help his defenders play out of a high press.

The first problem was key in preventing his dream switch to Real Madrid. When they lost Thibaut Courtois to a cruciate knee injury at the start of the season they needed to move quickly for a quality replacement and De Gea was the first name mentioned.

But before too long it became clear that he was being talked about everywhere on social media but not really being discussed at Real Madrid. Their attention was on the Sevilla keeper of Yassine ‘Bono’ Bonnou. He is Morocco’s No 1 and Sevilla were not in a position to turn down a £17million offer.

In the end Bono didn’t join because he was going to miss up to six weeks because of the Africa Cup of Nations, and because the opportunity presented itself to take Kepa Arrizabalaga on loan for a season from Chelsea.

Why Kepa and not De Gea? Because Madrid saw it as a choice between Spain’s No 2 and a keeper no longer called up by Spain.

Bono did not stay at Sevilla, instead moving to Al-Hilal in the Saudi Pro League for £18m. And Saudi Arabia would appear to be another option. 

De Gea’s desire to settle back in his home country with Spanish wife Edurne Garcia have made that an option that will only be looked at when other possibilities have been fully exhausted. 

Real Madrid opted to Kepa Arrizabalaga from Chelsea instead of signing David de Gea

Real Madrid opted to Kepa Arrizabalaga from Chelsea instead of signing David de Gea

The Spaniard has been close to joining a number of clubs but a move has not come to fruition

The Spaniard has been close to joining a number of clubs but a move has not come to fruition

He married his long-term partner in Menorca this summer and after so long away the feeling is they prefer to settle back in Spain.

Al-Hilal had been looking for a keeper all summer and could certainly have matched the £375,000-per-week wages that De Gea picked up at Manchester United. 

In the end Bono was a good option for them, leaving De Gea still open to LaLiga offers that have not so far been incoming.

Perceptions of him, unfair as they are, do not help. His last months at Manchester United should not have gone the way they did. 

Had he played out his career at Old Trafford with the club giving him the sort of send off warranted by his service and longevity it might have served as a reminder of what a keeper he has been.

Instead there was just uncertainty over his future, blunders in some of his final games and the general cloud of Erik ten Hag’s diminishing confidence in his ability to become the keeper he felt he needed.

De Gea’s departure from the Spain squad was similarly inauspicious. His last game for them came two years ago next month in a 1-0 defeat to Ukraine. The finger of blame was pointed his way for the goal he conceded.

Luis Enrique defended him after the game saying: ‘Could he have done more? You can always do more but blaming De Gea has become like a national sport. He gives us so much. If we are going to blame De Gea in a game like this then we might as well pack up and go home.’

Arsenal goalkeeper David Raya

Chelsea goalkeeper Robert Sanchez

Arsenal’s David Raya and Chelsea’s Robert Sanchez have been chosen ahead of De Gea for the Spanish national side in recent times

But despite that defence of his keeper when he picked his next team Athletic Bilbao keeper Unai Simon was in goal and soon become number one. 

And it wasn’t long before De Gea was edged out of the squad completely with now Chelsea and Arsenal keepers Robert Sanchez and David Raya picked instead as No 2 and three.

Both are good with their feet – a quality many coaches who want their keeper to be an extra man at the back as the team play out now demand.

None of this still completely explains why one of Spain’s best keepers over the last decade is without a club. He currently finds himself almost in the position of an out-of-work coach – just waiting for a vacancy to arise.

Valencia will eventually cash-in on their 22-year-old Giorgi Mamardashvili and De Gea will be linked with them. But that will throw-up another problem he faces as he tries to get back into football. 

As one of LaLiga’s cash-strapped, prudent clubs they will look to repeat the trick they pulled off with Mamardashvili: buying a young, relatively unknown in order to make a profit on his sale.

De Gea is going to have play the waiting game. And maybe look to a former international team-mate for inspiration. Pepe Reina started 22 games for Villarreal last season despite being 41 years old.


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Source From: Football | Mail Online

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