De Gea looked to be set for a move to the Bernabeu late on Monday night but the paperwork was not submitted before the Spanish transfer window deadline.
Madrid are preparing to launch an appeal to FIFA today over the debacle but Man United are open to the possibility of welcoming back De Gea to Manchester.
Louis van Gaal has not included De Gea in any of his matchday squads so far this campaign but there are no concerns over the keeper’s professionalism should he make a return.
It had looked for all the world that De Gea would be a Madrid player by now and the dramatic turn of events last night came as a huge shock.
Whether he will be accepted back by the fans, his teammates or the manager, despite the official line, remains to be seen. Regardless, there may still be room for Madrid to secure a deal for the 24-year-old if they are successful in their appeal.