The Daily Mail claims Manchester United will open the bidding for Roma midfielder Kevin Strootman with a £25 million offer for the Dutchman this winter.
Strootman is thought to be a key target for United, with the injury which kept him out of the World Cup reportedly one of the main reasons the Old Trafford side haven’t already made a move to sign him.
“There are concerns that Louis van Gaal’s squad still needs strengthening in defence and midfield, and Roma’s Kevin Strootman has already been lined up as a £25m target in January when the Holland star will have fully recovered from a serious knee injury,” reports the Mail.
Strootman is capable of creating the sort of presence in midfield which has been missing from United’s team but there is arguably a more pressing position to take care of.
United failed to sign a centre-back over the course of the summer, meaning the experience and quality which has been lost through the exits of Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand still hasn’t been replaced.
Van Gaal’s move for Daley Blind means United finally have someone who can already play a holding role in front of the back four, delaying the need to go after a deal for Strootman.
There is also the possibility that other sides could get involved in the race to sign Strootman this January once he returns to fitness and form with the Serie A giants.
However, United are well equipped to deal with any transfer bidding war which breaks out in the winter as their huge deals throughout this past summer have shown.
Strootman would have been a key part of van Gaal’s World Cup plans with the Netherlands had he not been injured and it seems the Manchester United boss didn’t want to make a move unless he could use Strootman immediately.