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United lining up De Gea replacement

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Van Gaal prepared to take his search to Stoke

Manchester United are ready to sign Stoke City goalkeeper Asmir Begovic if David De Gea leaves in the summer.

De Gea has been strongly linked with a move to La Liga giants Real Madrid, after having his best season in a United shirt since joining from Atletico Madrid in 2011.

Such performances from the Spanish international have attracted interest from the Galactico’s manager Carlo Ancelotti, who wants to replace veteran shot-stopper Iker Casillas with a young talent.

If De Gea decides he wants a move to the current European Champions, the Red Devils’ boss Louis van Gaal may bring the Bosnian international Begovic to Old Trafford.

Potters may cash in

The former Portsmouth goalkeeper is under contract at the Britannia Stadium until 2016, but a big money offer may be too good to turn down for the club.

However, the Potters have a young replacement of their own in England international ‘keeper Jack Butland. Butland had an outstanding game for Stoke at Swansea City yesterday, despite his team losing the game 2-0.

If United lose De Gea, they will have to fight off competition from arch rivals Liverpool should they want to sign the 27-year old Begovic.

David De Gea’s performances saw him make the Professional Footballers’ Association team of the year, ahead of Chelsea’s Thibaut Courtois in goal.

By Kieran Makin

Twitter: @kieranmaksports

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