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Manchester United goalkeeper Dean Henderson set for 18-month loan - with Chelsea touted as a shock destination

Dean Henderson
(Image credit: PA)

Forgotten Manchester United no.2 Dean Henderson looks likely to leave on a long-term loan - but are Chelsea in for the English stopper once more?

That's what's been suggested by football.london, who say that the Blues' historic links with the English international mean that he may be given an opportunity to finally move to Stamford Bridge in January.

Chelsea were reportedly interested in Henderson during Kepa Arrizabalaga's struggles with the no.1 role. Kepa, who arrived from Athletic Bilbao for an eye-watering £72m on a seven-year contract, floundered between the sticks in English football and is no second choice. 

In September 2020, the west Londoners turned to Edouard Mendy as a low-cost custodian to replace Kepa. While the deal looked like a temporary fix at the time to some, the Senegalese stopper has thrived in goal for the club.

With Chelsea having entertained the possibility of signing Henderson for a while, however, they may want to pounce this January. 

Henderson is said to be frustrated sitting on the bench behind De Gea, who has returned to form this season for the Red Devils. Henderson returned to Old Trafford after a successful loan spell at Sheffield United and was widely expected to either find a deal elsewhere or usurp the waning De Gea permanently.

But things haven't played out like that. United also have Lee Grant and Tom Heaton in reserve as options in goal.

Were Chelsea to sign Henderson, the 24-year-old would likely compete with Mendy for the no.1 shirt, replacing Kepa. The Spaniard was given cup keeper billing last season and played in the Blues' run to the final, eventually losing at Wembley to Leicester City.

It's perhaps unlikely though that Henderson would want to join another big club just to sit on the bench. Tottenham Hotspur have been mooted as a possible destination with Hugo Lloris ageing, while Newcastle have reportedly shown interest in signing another goalkeeper, despite having a good selection at the club already.