Why Manchester United have committed a blunder by letting Sam Johnstone leave
Sam Johnstone has served numerous loan spells away from Manchester United. Last summer, the 25-year-old was loaned out to Aston Villa and he did a tremendous job there, maintaining 22 clean sheets in 48 Championship matches.
Now, however, the player has completed a £5m move to join recently-relegated outfit West Bromwich Albion.
David De Gea has cemented his place as an undisputed No.1 at Old Trafford but Sergio Romero remains on the periphery. Hence, the club should have retained Johnstone to play as the No.2. The goalkeeper is exceptionally talented and it is baffling as to why United let him go in the first place.
The 25-year-old has certainly done enough to deserve the No.2 spot at least. With that in mind, let’s take a look at why United shouldn’t have parted ways with him.
Scouting Sam Johnstone
Johnstone is a tall goalkeeper and is known to be quite physical, which allows him to dominate the box. He is comfortable at claiming crosses, making crucial saves and stamping his authority on his defensive line.
The 25-year-old also possesses great propensity to make tough shots look like easy saves. Due to his height, Johnstone can cover a large area of the goal while diving or plunging to make a save.
He only conceded 42 goals in 48 appearances for Villa – a team which had the habit of leaking goals in abundance. Ultimately, he could not help them secure a promotion to the top-flight as Fulham edged past them but it goes without saying that Johnstone was one of their brightest performers last season.
And a player like him could have been an important figure at Old Trafford as well. Given the amount of experience and skills he possesses, Johnstone would have done a terrific job in the Premier League as well.
United should have kept him
Although United could not guarantee a starting spot, they should have kept Johnstone around as a backup to De Gea. Despite all of his good work at United, this is certainly a questionable move by Jose Mourinho.
Johnstone will certainly get to play regularly and work wonders for the Baggies as they strive to fight their way out of the Championship next season. But given the circumstances, United have lost a player who could have been a future superstar.