According to reports, Manchester United are scouting Porto goalkeeper Diogo Costa. The Red Devils identified the Portuguese shot-stopper as the ideal successor to their current number one – David de Gea, but a recent development seems to have hampered their plans.
David de Gea has been United’s undisputed starter at the post since 2011. However, the Spaniard’s poor distribution and shot prevention abilities have come into focus in recent years. New United manager Erik ten Hag decided not to ruffle too many feathers in the summer transfer window itself. The Dutchman allowed De Gea to remain the club’s number 1 keeper amidst a host of changes to the team.
However, the former Atletico Madrid man has struggled to adapt to the requirements of his new system. David de Gea’s poor passing has often ended United’s attacks even before they have begun. His unwillingness to leave his line has also hindered Manchester United’s high line of defence.
The 31-year-old’s struggles on the ball aren’t a recent problem either. However, the Spaniard in his prime was a supreme shot-stopper and made amends for his deficiency on the ball with his proficiency in stopping it.
With time and age, the Spaniard’s shot-saving ability too has declined. This has brought out the other shortcomings in his game to the fore, making his enormous wages even more inexplicable. De Gea has already conceded 20 goals in the Premier League so far this season (stats via transfermarkt).
According to Metro, Porto shot-stopper Diogo Costa has been targeted by Manchester United as a possible replacement for David de Gea. Having watched the Portuguese keeper in action, the Red Devils are keeping a close eye on his situation.
However, a new development has dealt a major blow to the Manchester club’s transfer plans. As per the latest reports in One Football, the 23-year-old has signed a new long-term contract with the Portuguese side, which ties him to the club till 2027.
— FC Porto (@FCPorto) November 3, 2022
Initially, Diogo Costa had a €60m million release clause in his contract. This fee was deemed pretty friendly, especially for a club like Manchester United, and could have proven to be worth it in the long run. However, after putting pen to paper on fresh terms, the Liga NOS giants have shifted the release clause to an astronomical €75m.
Diogo Costa made his first-team debut for Porto in the 2019-20 season, at the age of 19. Across 4 seasons, the Portuguese custodian has played 87 games, conceding 77 goals and keeping 36 clean sheets (stats via transfermarkt).
The 23-year-old shot-stopper has made 132 saves against the 193 shots on the frame against him in the Primeira Liga. (via: fbref.com). He also has 4 clean sheets from 7 appearances for the Portugal National Team.
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Additionally, Costa is also very comfortable with the ball at his feet. This would be crucial for Erik ten Hag to properly execute his tactics with United. Representatives of the Red Devils attended Porto’s game against Braga to scout the 23-year-old.
Should Manchester United sign Diogo Costa? Is it time for the Red Devils to phase out David de Gea? Let us know in the comments.
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