Tottenham and Man Utd will go head-to-head this summer with goalkeeper Sam Johnstone up for grabs, though his arrival at Old Trafford could spark a major exit, per a report.
The future of the three-cap England international looks destined to lay away from West Brom. The Baggies stopper, 29, will become a free agent in the summer. According to Sky Sports, Johnstone has ‘refused’ the offer of a new deal.
On his agenda is a return to the bright lights of the Premier League.
Johnstone excelled in the top flight in the 2020-21 season. Indeed, the goalkeeper scooped both the West Brom Supporters’ Player of the Year and West Brom Players’ Player of the Year awards.
That wasn’t enough to prevent their relegation, however, and the Baggies are not on course to win promotion at the first time of asking.
The outlet report the pair will ‘battle it out’ for his signature. Southampton could also be a contender, though the lure of joining United or Spurs could prove tough to ignore.
Johnstone rose through Man Utd’s academy and was on the club’s books between 2011-18. It’s noted his return to Old Trafford could prompt a ‘significant shake-up’ between the sticks.
Sam Johnstone in, Dean Henderson out?
Dean Henderson is the current back-up to David de Gea, though he harbours strong desires of being a No 1.
With De Gea back to his best this year, Johnstone’s arrival could reportedly bring Henderson’s situation to a head.
The stopper is described as already ‘considering his options’ anyway, with a loan exit a distinct possibility.
Newcastle were linked with Henderson in January and would be more than capable of taking on his salary. If their interest isn’t renewed, it’s unlikely there’ll be a dearth of suitors anyway.
Johnstone’s availability on a free could be too good for Manchester United to turn down. Though they’ll first have to get past Tottenham.
Hugo Lloris penned a new two-year extension in January, though there will soon be room for a new back-up.
That spot is currently held by Pierluigi Gollini. However, the Atalanta loanee looks destined to return to Italy after failing to impress Antonio Conte. As such, his option to buy won’t be taken up.
Tottenham reportedly considered signing Johnstone early in January, though prioritised other positions instead. The twin arrivals of Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski have made instant impacts.
West Brom boss Steve Bruce admitted at the weekend that he fully expects Johnstone to leave this summer.
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