Could this van Gaal decision see David de Gea leave United?

David de Gea for Spain U21

Following reports linking Juan Mata with a Manchester United departure, his teammate David de Gea has been speaking about that prospect.

Recent reports have suggested that new Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal would be open to selling club-record signing Juan Mata this summer. But it could be a move that affects more than one Spaniard currently at the club.

Mata only arrived in January for £37.1million, but following the Dutchman’s appointment, the rumours began that he could be on his way less than a year later.

While David Moyes’ other signing – Marouane Fellaini – could understandably find his time at United coming to an end, Mata’s is surely only just getting started.

His performances at the end of the last campaign spoke of a player who was getting comfortable at his new club and alongside his new teammates. While his friendship with countryman David de Gea was obvious for all to see.

And now the United goalkeeper has been speaking about the rumours that Mata could be on his way.

In an interview with Movistar and later published by Sky Sports, De Gea said, “I would not sell Juan Mata. He is a very important player for us.

“We have taken a qualitative leap with him and he has adapted very well.”

In truth I cannot see Mata leaving United this summer. It would be a huge gamble from van Gaal when there are a whole host of players whose departures the fans would understand; players who have failed to perform for quite some time.

But if Mata did leave, you wonder what impact that would have on his good friend De Gea; a player who knows he is fast-becoming one of the best in the world in his position, and one who wants United to be signing quality, not selling it.

With his own contract ending in the summer of 2016, United need to tie down the long-term future of their outstanding young goalkeeper. With Mata remaining at the club for the long haul, that may just become a little easier.

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch