Manchester United linked with Paris St Germain’s Keylor Navas

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The Peoples Person

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Spanish outlet Marca has linked Manchester United with a swoop for PSG goalkeeper Keylor Navas, with Italian giants Juventus and AC Milan also said to be interested.

The Costa Rican’s place in the Ligue 1 side is likely to be threatened by the imminent arrival of Gianluigi Donnarumma, making a move away from France a serious possibility.

Navas has, of course, been linked with United before, so fans with medium-term memories might be excused for wincing at the sight of his name.

For those who don’t remember the absurdity of ‘De Gea fax-gate’, a quick recap may prove useful.

Back in 2015 a deal was agreed for Navas to join United from Real Madrid in a cash-plus-player exchange for David De Gea. ‘Big Dave’ was at the height of his considerable powers and United fans were desperate for something – anything – to derail the deal.

What they couldn’t have anticipated was a fault with United’s fax machine stopping the timely submission of paperwork, meaning the deal couldn’t be completed before the transfer deadline.

The right result then. However, the farcical nature of the breakdown seemed to underline the kind of broader institutional failings that defined the club at the time.

Navas ended up staying in Madrid for four more years, becoming a fan-favourite and an ever-present in a side that won three successive Champions League titles.

However, the keeper was eventually ousted from the starting line up by Thibaut Courtois, spending a season playing understudy to the Belgian before moving to PSG in 2019.

His exploits in Paris have seen Navas cement his reputation as a superb keeper, making the current uncertainty more than a little curious.

It seems odd that a keeper as feted as Navas should find himself both lauded and usurped with such regularity. Furthermore, the Costa Rican only committed to a three-year extension at Parc des Princes earlier this year, so is obviously settled in the French capital.

He’s a two-time winner of UCL goalkeeper of the year – one apiece with Real and PSG – and winner of around one hundred international caps. He’s rarely injured or newsworthy for the wrong reasons and is loved by fans spanning two continents.

Yet, here we are again, on the cusp of another strange period in Navas’ life of seemingly endless déjà vu.

Perhaps the biggest irony in all of this involves the total reversal of fan expectation since the last time the keeper was linked with a move to Manchester.

With De Gea’s crown having long-since slipped, he’s now widely seen as a virtual deadweight, whereas Navas would now be viewed by most of United’s fanbase as an ideal replacement.

At the quoted price of just 12 million euros (£10.3m), it might be time to pray that the fax machine is back in full working order.

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