What will be Manchester United's sixth 'Here We Go' of the season has come in the form of Newcastle's Martin Dubravka!
As per Fabrizio Romano, the Slovakian international will sign for Manchester United in a loan deal, with an option to buy for £5 million. According to Sky Sports’ Darmesh Sheth, the option to buy turns into an obligation if a certain number of appearances are reached.
Personal terms have already been agreed upon without an issue, as it is said the goalkeeper "dreams" of Manchester United.
To add to this, the player was prepared to "do an Antony" to achieve this move, a term coined after the Brazilian went on strike against his club to force a deal through- a show of desire that will likely sit well with United fans.
Dubravka joins Ten Hag's side as a result of the clubs search for a new goalkeeper to provide competition to David de Gea, a player who largely does not fit the manager's style of play due to his lack of aggression in the air and lack of ability on the ball.
In 12 less full 90's last season, Dubravka attempted just six less passes than the Spaniard (not including goal kicks), showing a level of confidence with the ball. He also stopped seven more crosses coming into the penalty area and made the same amount of sweeping actions outside the box, suggesting an increased level of aggression. This is seen as vital in a top-level side, and is much-needed in a modern day goalkeeper.
Though De Gea remains an excellent shot-stopper (traditionally a goalkeepers primary job), he only had a 2% better save percentage than Dubravka last season. This can be interpreted as United's defence leaking a lot of chances, which they did, but Newcastle's defence wasn't exactly world-class either.
Compared to the level United should be at, the 33 year-old may not be the best signing. That said, he may be the first step towards an ideal Ten Hag system. It is unlikely that Dubravka fully takes the number one spot, but the day De Gea is no longer our goalkeeper may not be too far away. Many fans may be counting the days until this moment, others will be dreading it, as it will be the loss of one of the only players who has won a Premier League with the club. Regardless, only time will tell how much of a role Dubravka will play in the rebuilding side.
Stay tuned for what we hope will be a very busy final few days of the transfer window, here, on UtdActive.