Hugo Lloris

Hugo Lloris' transfer links with Manchester United make no sense

Jamie Spencer
Hugo Lloris has been linked with Man Utd if he leaves Spurs
Hugo Lloris has been linked with Man Utd if he leaves Spurs / Alex Livesey - Danehouse/Getty Images

Manchester United have been billed as a possible destination for Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris in a bizarre report of ‘musical chairs’ that has emerged from France.

Lloris is nearing the final 12 months of his Spurs contract and the club have previously been tipped to look to the future and secure a replacement. There are now fresh claims that could in the shape of Lille goalkeeper and emerging France international Mike Maignan.

Spurs have eyes on Lille goalkeeper Mike Maignan
Spurs have eyes on Lille goalkeeper Mike Maignan / ANP Sport/Getty Images

Maignan has helped Lille become Ligue 1 title challengers this season and was briefly considered by Chelsea back in August before they settled on Edouard Mendy from Rennes instead.

L'Equipe reports that Spurs are ‘very interested’ in Maignan, who himself is said to be an admirer of the Premier League. The idea that that Spurs should be looking to replace a 34-year-old with a 25-year-old likely to succeed him at international level soon enough is very plausible, as is the idea that landing Maignan would immediately open the door for Lloris to leave.

What is much more difficult to comprehend is L’Equipe’s subsequent assertion that Manchester United could be where Lloris, who lifted the World Cup trophy as France captain in 2018, ends up.

It rests on Lloris being able to take on a final ‘big challenge’ before he retires and the Old Trafford club being positioned as just that. Yet the situation is a very complicated one that makes it unlikely.

David de Gea & Dean Henderson are battling to be Man Utd #1
Man Utd already have David de Gea & Dean Henderson / LAURENCE GRIFFITHS/Getty Images

United could only sign a new goalkeeper this summer if David de Gea is to leave. But while that is a possibility, the sole reason to let go of the long-serving Spaniard is to promote home-grown stopper Dean Henderson to the number one shirt.

It would make no sense to sell De Gea and go on to bring in Lloris because it would only create a fresh version of the same problem they have now and offers no solution.

Lloris wouldn’t join a club for the last big contract of his career to be a back-up and United aren’t selling De Gea unless they are intent on promoting Henderson. There is no logic to it otherwise.

90min revealed in early March that United will not actively list De Gea on the transfer market this summer but will at least consider moving him on because they are keen on promoting Henderson, who is determined to become the starter at his boyhood club and is not prepared to wait too long.

David de Gea
Man Utd are considering selling De Gea / Pool/Getty Images

Equally, United don’t want Henderson to sit on the bench as a back-up for a second year in a row but are reluctant to demote De Gea, who has been a loyal servant for a decade. The club has asked Henderson to be patient until summer when officials hope a solution may present itself.

There are precious few clubs that would be suitable destinations for De Gea this summer. Former club Atletico Madrid have been asked to be kept informed of his situation, although they would only make an approach were current stopper Jan Oblak to leave – his price tag and the state of football finances in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic make that highly unlikely.

Paris Saint-Germain are the obvious candidates for De Gea as they consider replacing 34-year-old Keylor Navas with someone younger, but the French giants are also believed to be keeping a close eye on AC Milan’s Gianluigi Donnarumma, who is due to be out of contract at San Siro this summer.

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