Club official: Dutch Manchester United target's will is to play for Lazio

Stefan de Vrij is eager to secure a move to Lazio over Manchester United, says the Italian outfit’s sporting director.

The appointment of Louis van Gaal as Manchester United boss seemingly has given the Red Devils an inside track on Dutch transfer targets.

Van Gaal’s final act as Netherlands manager will come in Saturday’s World Cup third place play-off, after which he will formally take charge at Old Trafford.

Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw have already been brought in whilst the 62-year-old has been in Brazil, with a score of his Holland players tipped to follow with summer moves to United.

With pre-existing relationships on van Gaal’s, the Red Devils have been seen as the favourites to snap up a number of the Dutchmen that fell just short of reaching the final at Maracana.

One of these players is 22-year-old centre-back Stefan de Vrij, who started all six of the Oranje’s World Cup contests and posted a series of impressive performances.

Earlier this week the youngster’s agent moved to deny reports that de Vrij had already signed with United, though the Red Devils have reportedly been preparing a £12 million bid.

The main competition for de Vrij’s signature has always been Serie A side Lazio, who have been pursuing van Gaal’s international charge since May, per the Italian press.

And according to Aquile sporting director Igli Tare, the Feyenoord defender has his heart firmly set on a move to the Stadio Olimpico.

“A lot has been said,” Tare told reporters. “It’s been said that Manchester United have already finalised a deal [for de Vrij] but that isn’t true.

“His agent has been clear, he’s said that nothing is true and that the will of the player is to play for Lazio.”

Decisive days on de Vrij’s future at the club level are now coming up with the Netherlands squad set to return from South America for next week

United will be hoping de Vrij’s will - as recounted by Tare - can be swayed, with van Gaal’s presence on the bench at Old Trafford the trump card.

The Dutch starlet has shown he can perform at a high level under his countryman at the World Cup, and United would be remiss not to make a late push to snatch him from Lazio’s grasp.

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