David de Gea
David De Gea was signed by Sir Alex Ferguson to replace Edwin van der Sar in 2011 Getty

Manchester United have been handed a massive boost after their star player David De Gea moved close to agreeing to a new deal at Old Trafford, according to the Daily Mail.

The 24-year-old's current deal runs until the next 18 months and has yet to put pen to paper to extend his stay beyond the summer of 2016. He has been constantly linked with a move to Real, while the La Liga giants' star player Gareth Bale is on Red Devils' radar.

Earlier reports suggested that Real wanted De Gea as a part of the swap deal, which will see them allow Bale move in the opposite direction. United signed free agent Victor Valdes on an 18-month deal and he has become the second choice keeper for Louis van Gaal.

The former Atletico Madrid keeper's agent Jorge Mendes and United have already held talks over extending De Gea's stay at Old Trafford. The Daily Mail source claims that talks are heading in the right direction and the Spaniard will sign a lucrative deal with his current employers.

Despite securing Valdes' signature, United fans are still concerned with the delay in tying up De Gea to a new contract. After a disappointing start to his Old Trafford career, the stopper has emerged as one of the best keepers in the world.

With Valdes' deal through, Van Gaal and United now want to hand De Gea a new deal in order to fend off interest from Real, who are chasing the Madrid-born keeper.

Meanwhile, Valdes' signing will not pose any threat to De Gea after the former Barcelona star heaped praise on his compatriot and claimed United's number one was the best keeper in the world.

"I think now, in the moment, David is the best goalkeeper in the world. His performance every day and in every game shows everybody that his level is very high," Valdes told United's official website.

"He has had a great year and it is very nice. Now, I think he is the best goalkeeper in the world," he added.