Championship duo Wigan and Aston villa are all set to start a transfer war for Manchester United keeper Sam Johnstone.
The 23-year-old shot-stopper is believed to be highly rated by United boss Mourinho, and was even handed a new lucrative deal last month, which will see the youngster stay at Old Trafford until 2018.
But the fact is that, Mourinho wants Johnstone – who is still waiting to make a competitive senior appearance for the Red Devils – to go out on loan in order to bag more first-team experience.
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Johnstone, at present, is Manchester United’s third-choice goalkeeper behind David De Gea and Sergio Romero, and has already endured loan stints at five different clubs during his time at United.
As per ESPN, Championship teams Aston Villa and Wigan are aware of his situation, and are interested in securing a loan deal for Johnstone in January.
Villa boss Steve Bruce is desperately looking to strengthen his goalkeeping options in the January window, with Pierluigi Gollini, Jed Steer, and Mark Bunn yet to impress.
Meanwhile, Wigan are digging deep in the market for a keeper, after Liverpool loanee Adam Bogdan was ruled out for the remaining season with a serious knee injury.
Wigan boss Warren Joyce has previously worked with Johnstone during his managerial stint with Manchester United’s reserves, so he will be hoping to finalise the reunion.
Johnstone stated in the summer that he has really enjoyed his experiences on loan spells, but is now keen to see himself into contention for a starting role at United.
“I’ve been on loan in previous seasons and enjoyed it, playing men’s football for points in front of crowds. You can’t beat that,” Johnstone said.
“But, like I’ve said, I’m here and, every time I step on the pitch, I’m here to do a job and hopefully show the manager what I can do and push Sergio [Romero] and David [De Gea].”