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Keeping David De Gea Was A Masterstroke For Manchester United

David de Gea's move was billed as the biggest transfer of the summer between two of the game’s biggest clubs in Manchester United and Real Madrid. The last transfer between these two clubs was the £80 million transfer of Cristiano Ronaldo.

Despite both clubs agreeing on a fee and Manchester United securing Keylor Navas, the deal fell apart at the 11th hour, with many suggesting that United hadn't sent the paperwork on time. Having not played any game time this season and seeing his dream move collapse, De Gea was surely in limbo.

However, just ten short days after the collapsed deal to Madrid, the 24-year-old keeper completed a remarkable turnaround by signing a new deal that will keep him at Old Trafford until at least 2019.

In our assessment keeping de Gea was United's best transfer business of the summer. They have not only kept but managed to extend the goalkeeper’s contract, meaning that even if they do sell next summer they are sure to receive a fee that a keeper of his calibre deserves.

His performance against Southampton last weekend justified his standing as one of the best keepers in the world, and, at 24, he has a long and bright future ahead of him.

He made six saves in the 3-2 thriller at Saint Mary's. It is the most he has made in a Premier League game since his man of the match performance against Liverpool in December 2014. 

The instinctive save to keep out Jose Fonte's header was the best of the bunch, although he made crucial saves to keep out reported summer target Saido Mane and Victor Wanyama as well.

The Spaniard has already saved United two points this season and, if his performances last year are anything to go by, he will be just as crucial again this season., For United, he may prove to be irreplaceable.

De Gea enjoyed a stellar 2014/15 campaign during which he won the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year award for the second season running under Louis Van Gaal; During negotiations it was almost inconceivable that United could part company with him for a meagre sum.

The other beneficiary of the collapsed deal is Costa Rican international goalkeeper Keylor Navas, who recently revealed that he never wanted to leave Madrid and that his hand had been forced by the impending De Gea transfer.

Navas has clearly used this to his advantage and produced a string of fine displays with five cleans sheets: four in La Liga and one in the Champions League against Shakhtar Donetsk.

He'll be hoping that a fine personal season will be enough to secure his long term future at the club; However, it is unlikely that Real will decide against pursuing De Gea again next summer.

At 24, De Gea provides longevity and the idea that a ready- made replacement for Casillas — one who can represent both Real Madrid and Spain between the sticks, a mouth watering prospect.

All of this, plus De Gea's ability to regularly produce world class performances, means that Navas may be fighting against the clock. Even an excellent season for the current Madrid man filled with trophies may not be enough to prevent a similar situation arising next season.

Both United fans and Navas will hope that is not the case.

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