Manchester United have continuously been linked with Ajax's Daley Blind this summer, and the player himself paid tribute to Louis van Gaal's influence on his successful year.
Blind won his third Eredivisie title in row last season, something that had already seen him linked with Premier League clubs before he went on to star in the Netherlands World Cup tournament in Brazil.
The versatile defender set up Robin van Persie's outstanding diving header in the Netherlands' game with Spain, and was an integral member of Louis van Gaal's side that wound up beating Brazil to finish third, where he scored the opener in a 3-0 win.
It helped the 24-year-old to be selected as one of the 50 top players in world football, with the Dutchman finishing 36th in a list conducted by Goal.com.
And he had special thanks for the man that picked him to represent his country, and is now said to be chasing the player to turn out for Manchester United.
“I am very happy and proud," Blind told Goal after his inclusion on the list.
"You have many reasons to be proud when you're listed the 36th best player in the world.
"I enjoyed a pretty good and consistent season at Ajax. And I managed to really stand out at the World Cup. I am pleased to have received this chance [with Netherlands] and I am very grateful to the national coach."
It is only a small comment, but if nothing else it is a reminder at how much those that play under Van Gaal value his management - something that could easily come into play if Blind is given the chance to link up with the 63-year-old at club level.
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