Manchester United are said to ‘regret’ the huge 375,000 pounds a week salaries they handed over to David de Gea in 2019, and that may affect how they handle Paul Pogba’s contract situation this summer with the Frenchman now during the last year of his deal.
De Gea became United’s highest paid player at a certain distance when he assigned the club his long-term future. But the goalkeeper, who has already struggled with his form since 2018, has largely failed to justify such salaries with his inconsistent performances.
At the time, it made De Gea the highest paid player in Premier League history, as well as being a world record deal for a goalkeeper. If United had not agreed to these terms, he could have started negotiating with other clubs a few months later with the aim of leaving as a free agent by 2020.
The Athletic writes that some United officials in the Old Trafford hierarchy have “regretted that deal ever since”. Not only has De Gea’s long – term loss of form not earned such an agreement, it also led to further pay gaps in the locker room.
De Gea is Man Utd’s highest paid player / Sam Bagnall – AMA / Getty Images
Wage inequality had characterized previous years – perhaps especially with Alexis Sanchez’s 2018 monster deal – and the club looked to finally gain control of things until De Gea’s new terms broke any attempt to get a wage structure in place.
It is a similar situation the club is in with Pogba, who is set to become a free agent next summer, and United are now facing paying the midfielder £ 400,000 a week to get him to sign a new contract.
But it is possible that lessons have been learned. Pogba is not rushing into a new contract and is known for being keen to give himself many options for what the 28-year-old may be the last big deal of his career, whether at United or elsewhere.
Man Utd officials are divided over Paul Pogba’s contract situation / Paul Ellis – Pool / Getty Images
90 minutes earlier this month revealed that US officials are divided over how to proceed with Pogba. Some are aware of the possibility that he could leave as a free agent next summer, but others are unsure whether he will be retained at a cost of £ 400,000 per week.
Have lessons been learned from the De Gea saga? Time will tell.
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