By Manchester correspondent Alex Stevens

The executive responsible for Manchester United’s David de Gea paperwork has insisted the club registered the deal in time for the transfer to be completed, Football Insider sources understand.

United secretary John Alexander has told friends that United did not miss the deadline for De Gea to be registered on Fifa’s Transfer Matching System.

Akexander, who has a team of nearly 20 working with him at Old Trafford to administer contracts, registrations and other paperwork is satisfied the blame rests with Real officials for failing to register the documents in time with the Spanish league governing body LFP.

The De Gea transfer to the Bernabeu fell through after all the paperwork was not filed by Monday’s Spanish deadline of midnight. Instead it arrived at 12.28am, a full 28 minutes late.

Real are believed to be considering an appeal to Fifa in the hope that they can rescue the deal although it is almost certainly due to fail as a result of the strict LFP procedures in place.

There is far more leniency from the Premier League, who often sanction transfers hours after the official deadline has been missed.

Spanish reports have blamed United for dragging their heels with the De Gea documents, but the Premier League club are satisfied they processed the paperwork in time for the goalkeeper to be registered as a Real player and say they have the Fifa timestamp to prove it.

Alexander is one of the longest serving secretaries in the Premier League. The 59-year-old spent a decade at Tottenham before becoming only United’s fifth post-war secretary when he moved to Old Trafford in 2009.

He is highly rated at United for his diligence, knowledge and contacts by the club’s powerbrokers, including the Glazer family, executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward and manager Louis van Gaal.

De Gea faces having to wait until January to get his dream move to Real after a day of high drama.

Following months of on-off negotiations, United and Real finally agreed a £29million deal on Monday that involved De Gea moving to Spain and Keylor Navas heading to Old Trafford in part-exchange.

Both transfers have fallen through and are unlikely to now be resurrected until the next transfer window in four months’ time.