Andre Onana explains the role of a modern goalkeeper

Andre Onana is the man to replace David de Gea.

It’s a big compliment to the Cameroonian goalkeeper that Erik ten Hag, who has admired ball-playing goalkeepers in the past, wants to bring the keeper he had at Ajax to Old Trafford.

The influence a ball-playing keeper can have on a team could be seen at Man City and Liverpool in recent years, but now other Premier League clubs are adopting similar tactics, demanding their team plays out from the back and showing that they can deal with the pressure that comes with it.

David de Gea, who left the club at the end of June, was unable to offer top ball-playing abilities – which is why United seem willing to spend big on a modern keeper such as Onana.

The phrase ‘modern goalkeeper’ is now regularly used within the media – but it’s nice to hear Onana describe it in his own words. One of the big factors is being able to pass accurately, which should be seen as the bare minimum requirement for any player at the highest level.

“The way I feel about football, especially as a goalkeeper in the last 20 years, it is the position that has changed the most,” Onana previously said, as per Tactics Journal.

“When I learned to play, they told me ‘Andre, you should never play through the centre’ when I was young. But nowadays I tell you, if there’s space, come on. You always have to play where there’s space. And today, when I talk about a goalkeeper, I talk about a modern goalkeeper who can play with his feet, who is good one on one, who is brave, who transmits security, and is good at claiming the high balls.”

It’s exciting stuff to read as a United fan because Onana has all of those qualities – not to forget having confidence in abundance.

Onana added: “And having this goalkeeper would be an advantage for your team because in the end, you would always have numerical superiority. If the opposing team comes one on one, you have the numerical superiority only with the goalkeeper.”

Hopefully, the deal for Onana will be completed soon and Ten Hag can get to work with his new No.1.

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