Could van Gaal favourite Ron Vlaar solve United centre-back problem?

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Could Aston Villa defender Ron Vlaar provide the experience and stability needed at the back for United next season?

Manchester United are going into the new season with renewed optimism after the appointment of Louis van Gaal as their new club manager. But as much of a successful track record that LvG has it will mean nothing if he does not address a squad desperately in need of a little revamp.

One area in serious need of a breath of new life is the centre-back position. The seasoned veterans at the heart of United's defence are both exiting the club this summer. Nemanja Vidic is off to Inter Milan on a free transfer and Rio Ferdinand is set to leave at the expiration of his current contract.

So who should United bring in to the back?

Plenty of names have been mentioned. Dante, Marquinhos, Miranda, Stefan De Vrij, Eliaquim Mangala - and a player like this is certainly needed, a marquee signing with plenty of potential to emulate Rio and Vidic at the club.

But you could argue United need more than just one new centre back this summer. So what about one who is a regular for one of the top national teams in the world, possibly the best player at his club team and a player with Premier League experience. Add to that a successful previous working relationship with van Gaal and there is certainly scope for this player to make a United move.

The player in question is Dutch international Ron Vlaar. The Aston Villa defender put in some exceptional performances for the club last season, but is clearly capable of playing at a higher level than, with all due respect, at Villa Park.

He is a regular in the Dutch national team under van Gaal and knows Robin van Persie from international duty. At 29-years-old he is experienced enough without being over the hill. Sure he lacks the pace of a top class central defender but Per Mertesacker has shown how adaptation and a suitable partner can be enough to spur on a successful centre-back partnership.

Villa's financial situation is not great, so Vlaar would probably only cost a small amount more than the £3.4 million they paid Feyenoord for his signature in 2012.

Surely he is worth the gamble?

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