Stoke City goalkeeper Jack Butland has admitted that he wants to play for Manchester United at some point in his career.
The 24-year-old rose to prominence at Birmingham City and earned a move to Stoke City back in 2013 before going on to become part of the England senior squad.
And Butland, speaking on talkSPORT, has expressed his ambition to replace – or even usurp – the Spaniard one day.
“My ambitions are to be the Stoke number one and England number one, but there are other things I want to achieve in my career as well,” he said.
“I want to play in the Champions League and I want to win trophies. There’s no reason why we can’t win trophies at Stoke, we’ll try and win some cups and do as well as we can, but I obviously have ambitions.
“If it’s the right move at the right time, you never know. You always have to think about these things.
“A club like Manchester United, or whoever it may be… United are, for me, the biggest club in the world and you have to take those things in consideration.
“But if it’s right, if it’s not, I’ll make those decisions at the time.”
“I’m back in a Stoke kit at the minute and I’m focussed on doing as well as I can in pre-season and the season ahead, and what will be, will be.
“It’s all just speculation and rumours at the moment, and I don’t get into that too deeply.”
Supporters can thankfully rest at ease over De Gea’s future this summer; the 26-year-old is happy at Old Trafford after the club secured Champions League football back in May and Florentino Perez has confirmed that the La Liga champions would not make another advance for him.
But De Gea will not be around forever, and United would be wise to track the progress of Butland, who will, you sense, take the No.1 shirt from Joe Hart for England sooner rather than later as the Manchester City reject’s career continues to dwindle.
The Englishman stands imposingly at 6ft 5 but hallmarks his game with an astoundingly acrobatic approach, that huge frame moving in almost panther like fashion. He was identified as a future star some time ago and, in spite of a lengthy period on the sidelines last season, will only improve over the next few years.