Man Utd ‘confirm’ Dean Henderson new squad number during friendly defeat

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Manchester United appear to have confirmed that goalkeeper Dean Henderson will wear the No.26 shirt this season.

Henderson, 23, has returned to become a first-team squad member at Old Trafford after impressing on loan at Sheffield United last term.

The England Under-21 star, who recorded the fourth-highest amount of Premier League clean sheets for the Blades in 2019/20, was recently rewarded with a new long-term United contract.

And following David de Gea’s inconsistent season in goal for the Red Devils, many feel he is now ready to become Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s first-choice shot-stopper.

However, United have seemingly confirmed that De Gea will remain the club’s No.1 goalkeeper in the coming season.

Henderson was given a start in their 1-0 friendly defeat against Aston Villa on Sunday, and a graphic displayed by United’s in-house TV channel before the game had him down as No.26.

It remains to be seen how Solskjaer keeps both goalkeepers happy in the 2020/21 campaign.

The Norwegian’s former United team-mate Gary Neville believes it could be a recipe for disaster, highlighting the importance of knowing who your first-choice goalkeeper is.

Neville told Sky Sports: “The idea that Dean Henderson would come into Manchester United and replace David de Gea as No 1 goalkeeper straight away… it won't happen, I can guarantee it won't happen.

“This has got "problem" written all over it. The one area of the pitch where you need consistency and stability is your goalkeeper. You need to know who your No 1 is, you cannot be flip-flopping.

“It just does not work; I've never seen it work at any club or at international level. Where there is a decision to be made about two goalkeepers you have to pick your No 1, go with him and stick with him, even if there is a mistake.

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“Once you take David de Gea out of the team and put Henderson in, you may as well forget about De Gea. That's coming from my experiences at United.

“The period between Peter Schmeichel and Edwin van der Sar we had Ricardo, Fabien Barthez, Mark Bosnich, Roy Carroll, Tim Howard, Massimo Taibi, many goalkeepers over a five to six-year period and there was inconsistency that certainly didn't help.”

  • Manchester United FC

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