Manchester United’s first move of the summer is taking shape. Tom Heaton is expected to sign as a free agent.
Journalist Fabrizio Romano has reported that the deal is essentially ‘done’ pending a medical.
Romano has also shed light on the contract details for Heaton. He says the goalkeeper will sign a two year deal with an option for a further year.
He wrote on his Twitter:
“Tom Heaton will undergo his medical and sign as new Manchester United player in the next weeks, the deal is ‘done and completed’.”
“#MUFC Contract until June 2023 + option for one more season. Here we go.”
This type of deal makes sense, as it locks Heaton in as a back up role for two seasons, and then United can release him if he is no longer required.
Heaton can only sign officially from July when his Aston Villa contract formally expires.
Villa confirmed Heaton’s exit last week, with the goalkeeper posting a goodbye message to the club on social media.
The goalkeeper could be United’s first signing of the summer, although as it will take until July to officially go through, hopefully there will be a couple of new faces in beforehand already.
Last summer United’s business was left until the last minute. This year the club will hopefully make extra effort to put that right and strike deals earlier.
Heaton would only be a back-up and would essentially replace Lee Grant in the squad.
This third choice status could see him rise to deputy if either David de Gea or Dean Henderson leave.
Heaton spent the late 2000s on United’s books and left as a free agent in 2010.