News, views and rumours relating to Manchester United in the past 24 hours.
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has been welcomed to Manchester by a billboard reading “Welcome to Vanchester” adorned with the Dutch coach’s picture.
Louis van Gaal has praised striker Wayne Rooney but has urged caution over the No.10’s fitness and conditioning ahead of the new Premier League campaign.
“I liked him [Rooney] when I was the manager of his opponent,” said Van Gaal. “He is always working very hard, has a high level and can make goals. He did that in America, four goal in his first three matches is not so bad I think!”
“But we have to wait and see, we are now in the beginning of the preparation. The physical training will go on before our first league match,” added the coach.
In transfer news, United forward Angelo Henriquez has joined Dinamo Zagreb on loan for the season with an option to make the move for the Chilean permanent next summer.
United target and Netherlands international Daley Blind has admitted he could be open to joining the Red Devils under Louis van Gaal. However, Ajax boss Frank de Boer has asked the defender for one more year in the Dutch capital.
“I am happy here in Amsterdam. But if there comes another club I will have to think about it and then we will see. I will think about my options. For now I will focus on Ajax and we will see what happens next week,” he explained.
Meanwhile, The Metro reports United have agreed personal terms with Juan Cuadrado. Reports originating in Spain suggest the Colombian winger could be on his way to Old Trafford from Fiorentina, despite interest from Barcelona.
The Daily Mail suggests Germany defender Mats Hummels is set to ‘spark’ a £25 million ‘war’ between United and Arsenal as both the Red Devils and Gunners look to bring in defensive reinforcement. The North Londoners are looking to replace captain Thomas Vermaelen who signed for Barcelona, leaving United still in the market for a centre back after failing to bring in the Belgian from the Emirates.
The same source also reports that United will ‘axed’ as many as seven players. Javier Hernandez, Marouane Fellaini, Wilfried Zaha, youngster Will Keane, Nani, Anderson and Rafael have reportedly already been told they can leave but Shinji Kagawa is expected to stay at Old Trafford.
The Red Devils also remain heavily linked with Argentina winger Angel Di Maria who is still rumoured to be on his way out at Real Madrid this summer with the deal potentially costing as much as £55 million, according to reports.
In other news, Sky Sports pundit Jamie Redknapp believes Robin van Persie ‘owes’ United a ‘big season’ after a disappointing term under David Moyes in 2013/14 and the former Liverpool midfielder has also backed the Dutch ace to win finish the season as Premier League Top Scorer.