Manchester United goalkeeper Sam Johnstone is expected to finalize his loan move to Aston Villa in the next few days and return to the club where he spent the second half of last season.
The 24-year-old keeper is set to join Steve Bruce’s side and become their newest signing following John Terry’s arrival. Johnstone played in 22 games for the Villains the last term and conceded 26 goals with eight clean sheets and now could get the starting job at Villa Park. The competition is not that fierce as his rivals for the No. 1 are Mark Bunn and Jed Steer, so Johnstone will have a solid opportunity to start the new campaign between the sticks.
The gaffer discussed the deal during Villa’s pre-season training camp in Portugal: “Sam is an outstanding young goalkeeper. Towards the back end he looked the real deal. He can only get better,” Bruce said. “He needed the games to start with. But the way he finished, it convinced me that he will be a really good signing if we can make it,” he concluded.
Goalkeeper doesn’t have a realistic chance to play for Manchester United as David de Gea, Sergio Romero, and Joel Pereira are all ahead of him in the pecking order. His current contract with United will expire at the end of the season and Sam is trying to make the deal happen in order to get playing time before becoming a free agent next summer.
The Preston-born player began his career at old Trafford but never debuted for United and spent time at Scunthorpe United, Walsall, Yeovil Town, Doncaster Rovers, and Preston North End prior to joining the Villains last year. If he impresses Bruce in the 2017-18 campaign, Johnstone could seal the permanent deal in the next summer.