Manchester United close to agreeing surprise deal with Stoke City for stalwart

Stoke City's English goalkeeper Lee Grant gestures during the English Premier League football match between Brighton and Hove Albion and Stoke City at the American Express Community Stadium in Brighton, southern England on November 20, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Glyn KIRK / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo credit should read GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images)

According to the Manchester Evening News, Manchester United will agree a surprise deal with Stoke City for goalkeeper Lee Grant. The move comes as so many young shot-stoppers will be sent away from Old Trafford to get regular first-team football, leaving Jose Mourinho short on cover.

The 35-year-old stalwart will provide backup to David De Gea and Sergio Romero in the first-team next season, with Dean Henderson having been loaned out to Sheffield United, Joel Pereira and Kieran O’Hara expected to spend 2018/19 on loan elsewhere and Sam Johnstone departing at the end of his contract this summer.

MEN say Grant is unlikely to get game time next season unless in an emergency, but his experience could be useful in a coaching capacity. The former England u21 international has led a nomadic career, playing for five clubs and moving between the Premier League and Championship. He’s currently at Stoke City, having joined from Derby County in January 2017.

Grant spent last season as a backup to Jack Butland in goal for the Potters, making just five appearances in all competitions. Since making the switch to the Britannia Stadium, he’s featured 35 times, keeping 10 clean sheets for his troubles.

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