David de Gea confirms Manchester United departure

David de Gea has confirmed that his 12-year stay at Manchester United has come to an end following the expiry of his contract at the end of last month.

De Gea has been locked in talks over a new deal at United for the last couple of months but the two parties failed to reach an agreement and he will now be departing the club after 12 years.

The 32-year-old was a mainstay in the side from the moment he joined the club from Atletico Madrid in 2011, with Sir Alex Ferguson famously missing a United game to scout the then-promising prospect. Ferguson only missed two United games over his 27-year tenure, with the other fixture missed due to a wedding in the family.

De Gea was not on United’s list of retained players at the turn of the month and earlier on Saturday, the goalkeeper took to social media to confirm he had left the club.

“I just wanted to send this farewell message to all Manchester United supporters,” De Gea wrote on Twitter in a heartfelt farewell message.

“I would like to express my unwavering gratitude and appreciation for the love from the last 12 years. We’ve achieved a lot since my dear Sir Alex Ferguson brought me to this club.

I took incredible pride everytime I pulled on this shirt, to lead the team, to represent this institution, the biggest club in the world was an honour only bestows upon a few lucky footballers.

“It’s been an unforgettable and successful period since I came here. I didn’t think from leaving Madrid as a young boy we would achieve what we did together. Now, it’s the right time to undertake a new challenge, to push myself again in new surroundings. Manchester will always be in my heart, Manchester has shaped me and will never leave me. We’ve seen it all.”

De Gea made a stunning 545 appearances for the Reds and holds the all-time Premier League record for minutes recorded, having broken Ben Foster’s tally last year.

He also holds the record for most clean sheets in Manchester United’s history, having surpassed Peter Schmeichel last season.

It is believed that United will now go on to sign Inter Milan star Andre Onana, who has been heavily linked with a move to the club after an impressive first campaign with the Champions League finalists.

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