Real Madrid have been keen on De Gea since 2012 and came within a whisker of procuring his signature three years later. Los Blancos have never given up trying to bring the Spaniard to the Bernabéu, and United are lining up a potential replacement as a result.
Ter Stegen joined Barcelona from Borussia Monchengladbach in 2014 and has gone on to make 140 appearances in all competitions for the Catalans. The German international has been a regular between the sticks this season too, making 36 Liga appearances and keeping 18 clean sheets.
He’d be a good option if De Gea was to leave United, something manager Jose Mourinho has ruled out recently. However, De Gea’s contract expires in a year which means his future at Old Trafford remains in doubt. Until he puts pen to paper on an extension, Real aren’t likely to back off.
As a result, the Red Devils are forced to have a ‘plan B’ in mind if the worst should happen. There’s no guarantee ter Stegen would even want to leave Barca for United, given the Liga champions’ success this season, which makes keeping De Gea all the more important.