Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang feels the use of VAR in the Premier League means goalscorers cannot celebrate fully until their strike is ratified by the technology.

Aubameyang's equaliser earned Arsenal a 1-1 draw away to Manchester United on Monday, the striker cancelling out a first-half drive from Scott McTominay.

The Gabon international was flagged offside by the assistant but stayed cool to run on to Bukayo Saka's pass to beat David de Gea.

Aubameyang's seventh goal of the season means he has become the first Arsenal player to score as many goals in the Gunners' first seven Premier League games of a campaign since Dennis Bergkamp in 1997-98.

But he had to wait for VAR to overrule the linesman's decision, with replays clearly indicating Harry Maguire was playing Aubameyang onside after Axel Tuanzebe gave the ball away.

"Bukayo gave me a great pass, I was sure I was not offside," Aubameyang said to Sky Sports.

"I was surprised the referee whistled but I always try to score, even if there is a whistle.

"I just heard the crowd saying it was offside but then it was close so I was happy.

"It's always a bit, I don't know... a strange feeling.

"You cannot celebrate 100 per cent but it's OK, I'm happy all the same."

De Gea appeared to stop when the flag went up but the United goalkeeper had no arguments about VAR's decision to give the goal.

"We know there's VAR," he told Sky Sports. 

"If it's offside, it's offside, we need to keep focused and it's a goal for them, we need to learn from that mistake."

David de Gea's goalkeeper coach Emilio Alvarez has left Manchester United, the Premier League club have confirmed.

The 47-year-old has worked closely with De Gea for the past three seasons, remaining part of United's backroom staff following Jose Mourinho's exit last December.

Alvarez also mentored De Gea at Atletico Madrid earlier in his career before following the Spain international in making the switch to Old Trafford in 2016, but he has left the club three months on from Richard Hartis' arrival as senior goalkeeping coach.

"I would like to thank Emilio for all his help and hard work since my return to the club," United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said.  

"He is a good coach and we all wish him well for the future."

Alvarez's exit comes less than two weeks after De Gea, a rumoured long-term target for Real Madrid, penned a new five-year deal at Old Trafford.

"I will always be proud of belonging to this club," Alvarez said. "Wishing you every success in your endeavours."

Uncertainty around David de Gea's future could have come to hurt Manchester United, according to former goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel, who is relieved the player has extended his contract.

Last week, the Spain international signed a new four-year deal, with the option of a fifth year, to bring an end to speculation over his commitment to the club.

United had been faced with the prospect of losing De Gea on a free transfer in 2020 if they had not agreed to fresh terms, with Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus and Real Madrid all linked with the 28-year-old.

Former United star Schmeichel thinks the extension is a major boost to manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who is now able to concentrate on other concerns within the squad.

"Finally he signed the contract because it's been one of those situations that if it drags on too long it will actually hurt the football club," said Schmeichel. "It gets to a point where you say, 'Either you sign the contract or you leave but you tell us because we need to move on'.

"The situation at Manchester United is that we know quite a few of the players in the squad have to leave for the club to progress and we need to bring more players in, different kinds of players.

"I think the manager needs to know, 'Is David staying or is he going? Because I have to move on as a manager and we have to move on', but he signed and that's great.

"He's been, I think, in the last six years unquestionably the best player we've had, so it's nice. That box is now ticked and Ole can start looking at other areas he needs to improve in."

De Gea has played in all six of United's Premier League matches in an inconsistent start to the 2019-20 season.

He kept clean sheets in home wins against Chelsea and Leicester City but was at fault for Crystal Palace's second goal in a shock 2-1 win at Old Trafford last month, while he could do nothing to prevent a 2-0 loss to West Ham last Sunday.

De Gea is likely to be rested for Wednesday's EFL Cup match at home to Rochdale but is expected to face Arsenal next Monday.

He might have signed a lucrative new contract with Manchester United this week, but David de Gea's difficulties from free-kicks continued in Manchester United's sorry 2-0 defeat to West Ham on Sunday.

The Hammers were already a goal to the good when Aaron Cresswell stepped up to take a 20-yard free-kick six minutes from time.

The Spain international got a hand to the left-back's effort but was unable to keep it out, meaning he has conceded 12 goals from direct free-kicks since the start of the 2011-12 Premier League season – more than any other goalkeeper in the division.

Former United defender Gary Neville was less than impressed with De Gea's attempted save, describing him as having a "poppadom hand" during his co-commentary on Sky Sports.

Speaking in the Sky Sports studio before the game, former United boss Jose Mourinho described De Gea as "lucky" to have been given a new four-year deal by the Red Devils.

He said: "I think the moment he signed his huge contract is a moment that I don't think Manchester United need to pay as much as they have.

"One or two years ago the world was after him. At the moment, the majority of the big doors are closed. Real Madrid are closed. Barcelona are closed. Paris Saint-Germain are closed.

"I don't think United were under pressure because David was going to disappear. So, he gets a phenomenal contract in a moment when he’s a bit lucky to get it."

After the match, Mourinho suggested De Gea's approach to organising his defensive walls and where he places players within them might be a factor in his free-kick woes.

"I think, from a left-footed player [such as Cresswell], the two least important players in the wall are the first and the fourth," he said.

"The first, where Ashley Young is, because if the ball goes over him with the left foot the ball goes out. And the last one, the fourth, because if the ball goes over him it goes in the middle of the goal and you give a chance to the keeper.

"The two most important ones are where [Victor] Lindelof and [Scott] McTominay are. I don't think [Harry] Maguire should be the fourth man in the wall. He should be the second with McTominay and try to [block] it.

"I'm not saying they would do it because it's a very good shot from Cresswell."

David de Gea wants Manchester United to prove they can thrive in challenging environments by beating West Ham at the London Stadium on Sunday.

United head south after recording two successive 1-0 victories, first over Leicester City and then Astana in the Europa League in midweek.

Both wins were secured at Old Trafford, as was the opening-weekend trouncing of Chelsea.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men have only travelled twice this term – to Wolves and Southampton – and had to settle for a pair of 1-1 draws.

Those results and last season's 3-1 loss to the Hammers in London have goalkeeper De Gea demanding focus ahead of a tough test.

"I believe they have a decent side with some good players who are important to them," the Spain international told his club's website.

"They are on the up at the moment, but we still have bad memories from last season, so we have to be much more switched on right from the off than we were then. 

"There are three very important points at stake for us to remain up there near the top and also for the younger lads to keep gaining in confidence.

"We also want to show that's what we're here for, going away to difficult grounds and going there for the three points."

United have not won away from home since a second-leg upset of Paris Saint-Germain in the last 16 of the Champions League in March.

West Ham are unbeaten in five matches in all competitions and sit level with the Red Devils in the Premier League on eight points.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes David de Gea has done away with distractions and regained focus after signing a long-term contract extension with Manchester United.

Star goalkeeper De Gea ended speculation over his future when he put pen to paper on a fresh four-year deal on Monday.

Long-running negotiations dragged into the new season and kept potential suitors interested but Solskjaer grew increasingly confident of tying down the Spain international.

The United manager now expects to see the best of De Gea following a significant dip in his form last term.

"Most of the time we get to keep the ones we want to keep," said Solskjaer.

"The more I got to listen and speak to David, I was pretty confident we were going to make it.

"David is delighted. I think you could see by his performance [in the Premier League win] against Leicester that he had made up his mind. You could see the focus in his eyes again.

"You do feel very secure with a focused David behind you.

"He's really worked hard this season. He's still young. Edwin [van der Sar] signed for us when he was 35, so I'm sure David will be part of a successful United team."

De Gea will be rested when the Red Devils commence their Europa League campaign at home to Astana on Thursday.

Sergio Romero is to replace the 28-year-old in goal with Fred, Axel Tuanzebe and Mason Greenwood to join him in the starting XI.

It will be a second senior competitive start for teenager Greenwood, a talent held in high esteem by Solskjaer.

"Mason is one of the best finishers I've seen and I played with quite a few decent ones," said the former striker.

"He's still very young but he's maturing and he's developed so much since I came in. I remember the kid who just wanted to play with his mates in the Under-18s. Now he's knocking on my door wanting to play these games.

"I don't want to put too much pressure on him. It's just about enjoyment, go out and express yourself at Old Trafford."

In-form winger Daniel James will miss Manchester United's first Europa League match against Astana through injury.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer confirmed Wales international James suffered a "knock" against Leicester City at the weekend and would sit out Thursday's game at Old Trafford.

The 21-year-old skipped United's final training session before the Group L fixture and joins Paul Pogba, Anthony Martial and Luke Shaw on the sideline.

Jesse Lingard and Diogo Dalot are ready to return from illness and a hip problem respectively.

"He got a knock against Leicester so he won't be available," Solskjaer said of James.

"We're getting some back and losing some, so that's just the way it is."

James, who almost joined Leeds United in January, has shone since moving to Manchester from Swansea City, scoring three Premier League goals.

"Delighted with Dan," said Solskjaer. "That we signed him, that we managed to get him to Manchester is fantastic.

"He's proven with his X-factor already that he will give this squad a lot.

"I know he was very close [to Leeds], but that's football. Sometimes you have to take a chance and sometime life works in different ways, in strange ways. He's started really well here."

James will be one of several regulars missing from the starting XI as Solskjaer rotates his squad against the Kazakhstan Premier League champions.

David de Gea, fresh from signing a new four-year contract, will be rested, with Sergio Romero to replace him in goal.

Axel Tuanzebe, Mason Greenwood and Fred are also set to be given opportunities from the outset.

"It's not set in stone that this tournament is just going to be youngsters," the United manager added.

"They might play in the league. The experienced ones might play in the Europa League. Those are decisions we have to make at the time."

David de Gea insists Manchester United's players have complete faith in manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The Red Devils have endured a mixed start to the 2019-20 campaign but returned to winning ways on Saturday with a slender 1-0 victory over Leicester City.

De Gea – who signed a new deal at Old Trafford until June 2023 on Monday – has dismissed suggestions some in the United camp are unhappy with Solskjaer, stating his belief the Norwegian is the right man for the job.

"From the moment he arrived here, he showed his faith in me, right from minute one," the Spain international told the official Manchester United app. "I think he had a massive impact with the team. Everyone has faith in him, that's the most important thing.

"The fans are behind him and he's a manager who knows the club really well and the people who work here, and I reckon that is essential.

"He also shows a lot of confidence in the younger players, which is important for us, and so he's a really great manager."

While United have won just two of their opening five Premier League games, they do look more solid at the back following the arrivals of Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

They have conceded four goals in those games and De Gea is pleased with the enhancements in defence.

"I think we have improved a lot defensively," he added. "We are conceding fewer goals than last season. I think that, last year, we were letting in too many goals, but we are defending better and, from there, the team is improving.

"Of course, when you defend well, the team is bound to improve. We have some great players up front and we just have to keep on improving.

"There are lots of things we can work on, so, little by little, we can try and build a very strong team, a team which can dominate games more and dictate the play and, with that, win games."

After many, many months of speculation, David de Gea has pledged his future to Manchester United in the form of a new contract.

The Spain international has agreed to fresh terms that will run until the end of the 2022-23 season, with the option of a further year.

De Gea is one of United's senior players these days, having joined the club from Atletico Madrid as a 20-year-old in 2011 as one of the final major signings made by Alex Ferguson before his retirement two years later.

Fergie brought in a fair few goalkeepers during his 27 years at Old Trafford. Some of them proved shrewd, pivotal signings. Some did not.

Here, we run the rule over all the keepers to join during the reign of the great Scot...

Jim Leighton (1988-91)

Leighton followed Ferguson to United from Aberdeen two years after his manager made the move. A fine player in Scotland, Leighton could not replicate that same form and was dropped for the FA Cup final replay in 1990 after some clangers in the first game.

Verdict: Miss

 

Les Sealey (1990-91, 93-94)

The man who replaced Leighton for that victorious replay against Palace, Sealey also played in the 1991 European Cup Winners' Cup final victory over Barcelona. He sadly died at the age of just 43 in 2001 but is fondly remembered by United fans.

Verdict: Hit

 

Peter Schmeichel (1991-99)

Arguably United's greatest ever goalkeeper, Schmeichel won 11 major trophies with the Red Devils, including the famous treble in 1998-99. Even joining Manchester City before retirement has not tarnished his legacy at Old Trafford.

Verdict: Hit

 

Tony Coton (1996)

Better known as a goalkeeping coach than a player at United, Coton never made a first-team appearance for the club. Considered Watford's best ever keeper and a top player for City, his United playing days were forgettable, to say the least.

Verdict: Miss

 

Raimond van der Gouw (1996-2002)

Coton's replacement as understudy to Schmeichel and then Fabien Barthez, Van der Gouw was an astute signing who served United with aplomb - even if he didn't play too often.

Verdict: Hit

 

Nick Culkin (1997-2002)

Signed from York City, Culkin took the record for the shortest Premier League debut when he came on as a substitute against Arsenal just before full-time. At the end of his career, he turned out for FC United of Manchester, the team formed as part of the anti-Glazer protest movement.

Verdict: Miss

 

Mark Bosnich (1989-91, 1999-01)

After a brief stint at the club as a teenager, Bosnich was signed back to replace Schmeichel in 1999. He won a Premier League title but rarely looked convincing, particularly with his kicking, and Ferguson later criticised his professionalism. 

Verdict: Miss

 

Massimo Taibi (1999)

Taibi cost a reported £4.5million, a sizeable fee at the time. It's fair to say it was not justified. Taibi had a good debut in a win over fierce rivals Liverpool, but utterly wretched performances against Southampton and in a 5-0 loss to Chelsea more or less ended his United career before it started.

Verdict: Miss

 

Fabien Barthez (2000-04)

France's World Cup-winning goalkeeper from 1998, Barthez was both an exceptional talent and an eccentric prone to too many mistakes. He was twice a Premier League champion but simply could not be relied upon. Still, we won't forget the Laurent-Blanc-head-kissing routine in a hurry.

Verdict: Hit - just

 

Roy Carroll (2001-05)

Say 'Roy Carroll', and you think of Pedro Mendes. A Premier League and FA Cup winner with United, it was Carroll's error against Tottenham that sticks most vividly in the mind, even if the goal was somehow not given. At least it helped pave the way for goal-line technology.

Verdict: Miss

 

Ricardo (2002-05)

On his Premier League debut against Blackburn Rovers, Ricardo conceded and saved a penalty in a 3-1 win. He didn't play in the top flight again. He still considered his time at Old Trafford "a lovely experience", though.

Verdict: Miss

 

Luke Steele (2002-06)

Snapped up from Peterborough United, Steele's days with the Red Devils comprised of reserve-team matches and time on the substitute's bench. His best days came in a Barnsley shirt.

Verdict: Miss

 

Tim Howard (2003-07)

A promising talent, Howard struggled in the United limelight and infamously dropped a free-kick that led to Porto's decisive goal in a Champions League tie, leading to Jose Mourinho's wild celebratory sprint down the touchline. He had a much better career with Everton and the United States.

Verdict: Miss

 

Edwin van der Sar (2005-11)

It took six years, but United finally got their Schmeichel replacement. Van der Sar runs the Dane close as the club's greatest goalkeeper, winning four league titles and the Champions League as part of the most formidable side since the treble season.

Verdict: Hit

 

Tomasz Kuszczak (2006-12)

Another United keeper to concede and save a penalty on his debut, Kuszczak was a back-up to Van der Sar who never truly inspired confidence. He did win seven major trophies, though.

Verdict: Miss

 

Ben Foster (2005-10)

A bright talent who joined United from Stoke City, serious knee injuries hampered Foster's early career. A good goalkeeper who just wasn't quite good enough, certainly to wrestle the number one shirt away from Van der Sar, he has been a fine servant for West Brom and Watford.

Verdict: Miss - just

 

Anders Lindegaard (2010-15)

A reasonably dependable presence while De Gea adapted to life in the Premier League, Lindegaard won the title in 2012-13 in a United career that mostly went under the radar.

Verdict: Hit

 

David de Gea (2011 -)

He had some tricky early days, but De Gea soon developed into one of the world's elite goalkeepers. A dip in standards over the past 18 months does not diminish his overall standing at the club, and he is showing signs of recapturing his best form.

Verdict: Hit

It is official. David de Gea is going nowhere!

The Spain goalkeeper penned a new contract with Manchester United until 2023 on Monday, with the option to extend the deal by a further year.

De Gea's future at Old Trafford has often been the feature of debate, with Real Madrid most famously coming close to securing his signature in 2015, while Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain have also been reported suitors.

But the 28-year-old, who has become recognised as one of the world's best goalkeepers during his time at United, will be with the Red Devils for the foreseeable future.

Below, we have analysed Opta data to take a look at De Gea's best Premier League stats with United.

 

MORE CLEAN SHEETS THAN A HOTEL

Since De Gea made his debut in August 2011, no other goalkeeper can boast more than his 102 clean sheets from 280 top-flight games. The nearest rival is Tottenham's Hugo Lloris ( 87 from 244 ), while Joe Hart ( 85 from 216 ) and Petr Cech ( 84 from 221 ) also feature highly on the list.


A GLOVE-LY RECORD TO HOLD

De Gea arguably enjoyed his best campaign in a Red Devils jersey during the 2017-18 campaign as he kept 18 clean sheets to clinch the Golden Glove award. In that same campaign, Ederson ( 16 ), Lloris ( 15 ) and Thibaut Courtois ( 15 ) could not match De Gea's efforts. That season saw De Gea make 14 saves in a single match against Arsenal – the most in one game (same as Tim Krul and Vito Mannone) since Opta started collecting shot save data in the 2003-04 season.


ONE HUNDRED NOT OUT

It took De Gea 264 appearances to rack up a century of Premier League clean sheets. That pales in comparison to the 180 it took former Chelsea and Arsenal stopper Cech to reach the milestone. Pepe Reina ( 198 ), Peter Schmeichel ( 212 ), David Seaman ( 225 ), Edwin van der Sar ( 247 ) and Joe Hart ( 259 ) also achieved the feat in fewer games. De Gea's best run without conceding was a streak of six between February 2 and March 30 2013.


THE VITAL PREMIER LEAGUE STATISTICS

280 – De Gea has racked up an impressive 280 top-flight appearances since making the move to Old Trafford from Atletico Madrid, playing 25,184 minutes in the process.

102 – The Spain international has frequently kept opposition attacks frustrated with 102 clean sheets to date.

282 – De Gea has picked the ball out of the United goal on 282 occasions in the Premier League. The most in a single season was the 2018-19 campaign where he was beaten on 54 occasions.

785 – You do not earn the nickname "Dave saves" for nothing and De Gea has 785 to his name so far, with an impressive save percentage of 73.27.

2 – One slightly surprising area of his game is penalty saves. De Gea has stopped just two of the 24 Premier League penalties he has faced.

10 – In his eight-and-a-bit seasons to date, De Gea has been personally culpable for 10 errors leading to goals. The most in a single campaign came last term with four, while he impressively was at fault for zero in the 2013-14 and 2017-18 seasons.

158 – Of the 280 Premier League games he has played, De Gea has been on the winning side on 158 occasions.

David de Gea has committed his future to Manchester United by signing a new deal until June 2023, the Premier League side have confirmed.

De Gea, 28, was set to be out of contract at the end of the 2019-20 season but has instead signed to stay at United for at least another four years.

The Spain international, who helped United win the Premier League in his second season at the club in 2012-13, had previously been linked with Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Serie A champions Juventus.

But any doubt over his future has been cleared up and De Gea could take his Old Trafford stay to 13 years if the option to extend his new deal by a further year to 2024 is exercised.

"It has been a privilege to spend eight years at this great club and the opportunity to continue my career at Manchester United is a genuine honour," De Gea told United's official website.

"Since I arrived here, I could never have imagined I would play over 350 games for this club. Now my future is fixed, all I want is to help this team achieve what I believe we can and win trophies again, together.

"As one of the senior players in the squad, I want to support and lead in any way that I can to assist the younger players, so they know what it means to play here.

"I still feel that I have so much more to achieve at the club and I truly believe that Manchester United can build on the club's tradition of success and reward our fans for their support.

"I am committed to continuing repaying the fans for all of the care that they've shown me during the good times and the bad."

Reports suggest De Gea's new deal is worth £375,000 per week and makes him the world's highest-paid goalkeeper.

The shot-stopper, who is now in fierce competition with Chelsea's Kepa Arrizabalaga to start for Spain, almost left United for Madrid in 2015, but paperwork was not submitted in time.

De Gea claimed the Premier League Golden Glove in 2017-18 and has widely been regarded as one of the world's best at his position, although he is coming off a disappointing 2018-19 campaign.

His new contract is a major boost for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's United, who have endured a mixed opening to the campaign, with the Red Devils taking eight points from five matches.

During De Gea's time at United, he has also lifted the FA Cup, EFL Cup and Europa League, and manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes he will be vital in their quest to return the glory days to Old Trafford.

"I am delighted that David has committed his long-term future to the club," he said. "Over recent years, David has proved himself to be the best in the world and a vital part of our plans as we look to take Manchester United back to where it belongs.

"David is a fantastic person and his outstanding quality provides the perfect base to our defence.

"Over his time here, David has really understood the values of playing for Manchester United and now represents everything you want in a goalkeeper."

If losing your manager was bad enough, imagine losing your star defender?

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp and centre-back Virgil van Dijk are attracting some serious interest from across Europe.

Now, LaLiga's powerhouse duo are reportedly eyeing the Reds pair.

 

TOP STORY – BARCA AND MADRID WANT KLOPP AND VAN DIJK

According to AS, LaLiga champions Barcelona and rivals Real Madrid are set to go head-to-head to try to prise Klopp and Van Dijk from Liverpool.

Klopp and Van Dijk helped lead Liverpool to Champions League glory last season, while the Reds are challenging for Premier League honours this term having narrowly missed out to Manchester City in 2018-19.

With Barca head coach Ernesto Valverde and Madrid counterpart Zinedine Zidane under some early pressure in Spain, Klopp and Van Dijk are reportedly "two priorities" for both clubs.

 

ROUND-UP

Real Madrid have the budget to sign Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe at the end of the season, reports AS. Madrid's financial accounts have been revealed, with €156million in liquid assets at their disposal, as well as €285m in credit. Los Blancos are reportedly planning to persuade the France forward, who is contracted until 2022, not to re-sign in the French capital in an effort to force the club's hand.

Lionel Messi to MLS? There has been talk about Messi and David Beckham's incoming franchise Inter Miami following a report claiming a delegation had been sent out to open negotiations for the Barcelona captain. However, Goal says Messi has had no contact with Beckham's Miami.

Manchester United are trying everything to re-sign star goalkeeper David de Gea. According to the Times, United have offered De Gea a new contract with no wage drop if the Red Devils do not qualify for the Champions League. The Spain international, who is out of contract at the end of the season, reportedly has a four-year deal on the table worth £13.5m a season.

- Staying at Old Trafford, and Record and O Jogo both report United are back in for Benfica star Ruben Dias. The 22-year-old defender was linked to the Manchester club before the transfer window closed. Now reports claim a United official was in attendance for Benfica's 2-0 win over Gil Vicente.

Inter are hoping to sign Mario Gotze from Borussia Dortmund, according to Calciomercato.com. Gotze's contract expires at the end of the season and Antonio Conte's Inter are eyeing the Germany attacker on a free transfer.

- Velez Sarsfield's Thiago Almada is still on the radar of Manchester City, says Record. City had a bid rejected during the transfer window but Pep Guardiola's side remain keen on the 18-year-old.

David de Gea has finally committed his long-term future to Manchester United.

The goalkeeper was out of contract at the end of the season, with plenty of speculation regarding his future at Old Trafford.

But the Spain shot-stopper has now agreed to a new deal.

 

TOP STORY – DE GEA FINALLY SIGNS MAN UNITED DEAL

De Gea has signed a long-term contract with Manchester United, according to the Daily Record.

The 28-year-old's five-year deal is worth more than €15million per season, the report says.

De Gea has been linked with a move away amid the ongoing contract saga, with Juventus among those reported to be interested.

ROUND-UP

- Christian Eriksen's Tottenham future remains up in the air, but the Premier League giants seem eager to keep the midfielder amid apparent interest from Real Madrid and Juventus. Football Insider reports Spurs have offered the Denmark international a new deal worth £60m in total.

- Mario Mandzukic appears to be nearing a Juventus exit. The Croatia striker has rejected Qatari club Al-Gharafa, according to CalcioMercato, but is evaluating offers from elsewhere, including MLS, with the 33-year-old seemingly not in Maurizio Sarri's plans in Turin.

- Napoli are to chase Atalanta playmaker Josip Ilicic again in January, according to CalcioMercato. The 31-year-old was considered by Napoli during the close season and they are set to intensify their interest again at the start of 2020.

- Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha missed out on a move before the transfer window closed, and he is reportedly on the look-out for a new agent. The Daily Mail reports Mino Raiola is one of several agents circling the attacker, who is unhappy about not getting his move from Selhurst Park.

- Keita Balde enjoyed his season on loan at Inter in 2018-19, but the Serie A side opted not to use their buy option on the Monaco attacker. CalcioMercato reports the Senegal international wanted to stay in Italy and AC Milan are now considering the 24-year-old.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer remains hopeful David de Gea will sign a new contract with Manchester United and see out his career at Old Trafford.

The Spain international is into the final season of his existing deal and has yet to commit to fresh terms despite months of discussions.

De Gea has been linked with Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus and Real Madrid in the past and can open talks with foreign clubs from January over a pre-contract agreement.

Solskjaer rates the 28-year-old as the best goalkeeper in the business and is keen to get him tied down for the long term.

"I want David to stay here," Solskjaer said at a news conference on Friday. "He knows that and he's the best goalkeeper in the world - we've seen that over the years and I hope I can make sure he'll finish his career at Man United at the highest level.

"And there have been loads of talks, lots of discussions between David and the club and hopefully we can get it done."

De Gea appears certain to retain his place in goal for Saturday's visit of Leicester as United aim to end a three-match winless run.

Another regular at the back this season has been Harry Maguire, who joined from Leicester in an £80million transfer in August and Solskjaer sees the England centre-back as a future United captain.

"I think he's been brilliant," Solskjaer told reporters. "I think he's come into the dressing room and been a leader. He's also a leader on the pitch and I'm sure he's looking forward to playing against his old team. 

"Now he's here he's gonna be a big part of the future of this club, we've watched him enough to know he's the guy we wanted that's why we spent the money we did on him. 

"He's a definitely a character and personality that can be captain of a big club. In the dressing room, he's a leader both by performances, presence, stature and behaviour, he's a character you say you'd like to follow."

Another player rated highly by Solskjaer is Wales winger Daniel James, who has started the season in stunning fashion with four goals in six matches for club and country.

"After scouting him and speaking to [Wales boss Ryan] Giggs, I'm not surprised," he said. "Daniel's come in and when you score in your first performance at Old Trafford you get confidence and he's been great for us.

"There's more to come - he's got that X-factor with his pace, explosivity in and around the box. He's been practising right foot, left foot and he'll score more goals."

Solskjaer has confirmed United will be without midfielder Paul Pogba for Saturday's match, while Anthony Martial, Jesse Lingard, Luke Shaw and Aaron Wan-Bissaka may also miss out.

David de Gea is not irreplaceable at Manchester United as doubts remain over his future, according to former Red Devils goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar.

De Gea has been tipped to sign a new long-term contract with United, however, the star goalkeeper is yet to commit to the struggling Premier League giants.

The Spain international – who arrived from Atletico Madrid in 2011 – is out of contract at the end of the season and has been linked to Serie A champions Juventus as his reported contract offer remains unsigned.

Van der Sar – now Ajax's chief executive officer – won four Premier League titles and the Champions League during his time at United and the 48-year-old said De Gea is not indispensable despite his quality.

"Other goalkeepers can also fill the gap," said Van der Sar, who has been linked with a return to United as a sporting director, though the Dutchman has dismissed speculation.

"There are a few Premier League goalkeepers playing at the club who can also take the step up.

"I was 34 when I went to United, so there are lots of opportunities there.

"The decision needs to come at a certain point. It's taken a long time now, so it's a case of 'yes' or 'no' but I'm not a director of United."

De Gea's form has been questioned after a number of errors at the end of the 2018-19 season, while he could have done better for Crystal Palace's last-gasp winner against United last month.

However, Van der Sar added: "That happened to me, it happened to [Ryan] Giggs also, to everyone.

"Your form differs. He has been for so long at such a high level, so at a certain point it gets noticed [when your form dips], maybe not the first two times, but then people start to write about it. But he'll be fine. He's a great goalkeeper."

United – who have only won one of their opening four matches – are back in action at home to Leicester City on Saturday following the international break.

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