Louis van Gaal picks David De Gea in Manchester United squad for Champions League playoff
Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea has been picked by Louis van Gaal to feature in the match against Club Brugge in the Champions League play-off stages, according to Independent. The Spaniard is currently in a standoff with the club over a move to Spanish giants Real Madrid and wasn’t part of the United squad that faced Tottenham on the opening day.
Van Gaal justified his decision of dropping De Gea saying that the player’s mind was elsewhere and was not focused enough to feature in the match. "We've observed him in training and matches and he's not the David De Gea of last year," Van Gaal had said, as reported by BBC.
Real Madrid, who were looking for a replacement for club legend Iker Casillas, found their man in De Gea after his brilliant performances for United last season. De Gea, who has only one more year left in his contract, has also requested United to let him join Madrid, but the two clubs are yet to agree on a fee. The Spanish international had 10 clean sheets for Manchester United last season and was United’s Player of the Year.
De Gea can play in Champions League for Real Madrid if he plays for United in UCL Playoff
Van Gaal is determined to keep one of his best players and made the decision to include De Gea in the Champions League squad.
According to UEFA rules, a player cannot represent two teams in the Champions league in the same season, with the exception of the qualifying rounds. Thus there is a possibility that De Gea could play the two matches against Club Brugge and later represent Real Madrid in the tournament.
United also have some of their new signings to look forward to in the tournament after Van Gaal spent big to toughen their midfield and defence. The addition of midfielders like Bastian Schweinsteiger, Memphis Depay and Morgan Schneiderlin has definitely added a new dimension to the United midfield, but the teams defence has also received a boost after acquiring players like Sergio Romero, and Matteo Darmian.
Manchester United squad to play in Champions League
Goalkeepers: David De Gea, Anders Lindegaard, Sergio Romero, Sam Johnstone.
Defenders: Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo, Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling, Luke Shaw, Paddy McNair, Matteo Darmian, Tyler Blackett.
Midfielders: Adnan Januzaj, Michael Carrick, Daley Blind, Ashley Young, Ander Herrera, Antonio Valencia, Marouane Fellaini, Morgan Schneiderlin, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Jesse Lingard, Andreas Pereira, Memphis Depay, Juan Mata.
Strikers: Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez, James Wilson.