It doesn't take a genius to work out that Manchester United goalkeeer David De Gea has yet to fully win the confidence of Sir Alex Ferguson, and the Metro are reporting that the Spaniard's time to win over his manager is running out, with Asmir Begovic and Pepe Reina both being linked as replacements.
De Gea is without question one of the league's best shot-stoppers, however his habit of looking like a lost sheep whenever a cross comes in is providing opponents with a significant area of vulnerability whereby United can be attacked, and it seems that Ferguson is struggling to find further patience for the ex Atletico Madrid mans failings.
The young keeper is seemingly lacking authority and confidence in his penalty box and this is consistently being exploited. On Saturday against West Ham, so concerned were United of the Hammers ariel threat to De Gea that they set themselves out to defend their keepers weakness, rather than simply focusing on defending the set piece.
Reina is rumoured to be on his way out of Liverpool, but his form of late is hardly indication that he is someone of the calibre United would be looking at, given that he has made a significant number of clangers himself this season and has at times been in a fight with Brad Jones for his place.
A move for Begovic looks the more intriguing call given that he has been hugely significant contributor to the Premiership's most solid defence. Further to that, Begovic, at 25, still has the best years of his career ahead of him, and whilst he is not only a proven quality shot-stopper, his time with Stoke means that he is as strong at dealing with crosses as anyone in the league.
De Gea himself is still only 22 and it would seem harsh for Ferguson to bin him just yet and it seems unlikely that United who are generally stingy in January would stump up Stoke's £15 million asking price. However, there is only so long that he can keep failing and the longer his problems persist the more common these stories of replacement keepers are going to be, with Begovic likely to be the vocal point of a high percentage of them.