Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has told Dean Henderson he is not yet ready to dislodge David de Gea as Manchester United’s No.1 goalkeeper.
And the Norwegian is ready to sign off on the 23 year-old staying at Sheffield United on loan for another year.
Henderson has impressed during his two years at Bramall Lane, helping them to Championship promotion and a fine Premier League return.
But he still remains determined to become the No.1 at Old Trafford.
However, with De Gea, 29, having only signed a four-year deal – with a two-year option – last September, Henderson is wary of signing another long-term deal with the Red Devils, amid a growing list of suitors.
And while Solskjaer maintains that he could be United’s No.1 in the future, he believes the homegrown product – who joined United at 14 – is not yet ready to dislodge De Gea.
“We need to make sure Dean plays football to develop, so we’re going to make a decision later on,” Solskjaer said.
“He’s had two fantastic years and we appreciate what Sheffield United have done with him as well. So that’s an option, for him to stay at Sheffield United.”
“I think Dean has had a fantastic couple of years at Sheffield United and I think eventually he will end up as England’s No.1 and Man Utd’s No.1.
“But he’s got the best goalkeeper in the world to tip off his place and for me David is still developing and still getting better and better.”
Indeed, Solskjaer admitted that there will be talks over Henderson remaining with Chris Wilder’s side in 2020-21 – because he doesn’t believe there’s any point in Henderson returning right now.
“We are going to make a decision after both clubs sit down with him,” he continued.
“Dean can work in our goalkeeping department alongside David, Sergio (Romero) and Lee (Grant) but you can’t have three or four top keepers there and he needs games.”
Henderson is currently holding out on a new United contract extension – he has two years left and a year’s option on his current deal – as he wants guarantees over playing time.
Despite criticism of De Gea after his error against Spurs on Friday, Solskjaer remains staunch in his defence of the Spaniard on Tuesday, insisting: “For me he is still the best in the world and I wouldn’t swap him with anyone.”
Sergio Romero currently remains as De Gea’s deputy and Solskjaer remains delighted with the Argentine.
“I think Sergio is the best No.2 in the world. He’s so professional, even though he wants to play every game. He challenges David but they’re also good friends.
“Every day in training there’s a good atmosphere and environment there, but of course he’s disappointed every time I choose not to play him.
“I’ve got a good problem, we’ve got a good problem, a challenge to decide how our goalkeeping department is going to look next season because you can’t have three or four top keepers there.”