Manchester United have been dealt an injury blow ahead of the Premier League season opener.
Tom Heaton has been ruled out of the first Manchester United match of the season against Wolves, and possibly until the end of the month.
The club announced: “The experienced goalkeeper sustained an injury in training that is still being assessed but he is expected to be unavailable for the first few weeks of the season.”
While Heaton is only a back-up goalkeeper, this presents an unwelcome dilemma for manager Erik ten Hag.
No back up for Andre Onana
Andre Onana is Manchester United’s new first choice goalkeeper, but there is now no back-up behind him.
Tom Heaton was the second choice. He is now unavailable, and there’s a lack of other options.
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It’s possible but unlikely that United now look to place this deal on hold.
Dean Henderson has been out with an injury, which has delayed his exit this summer. He is not yet fully fit, and probably won’t be ready to deputies.
Ten Hag wants three goalkeepers
Erik ten Hag wants three goalkeeper options to cover injury and suspension. With the expected sales, United already needed to sign one.
Tom Heaton’s injury exacerbates the need to sign another back-up, to fill a third-choice role like Jack Butland did last season.
It’s possible United enter the market to try and get a goalkeeper in before Monday’s game, to sit on the bench.