Following another performance at the weekend that highlighted their deficiency in the center of midfield, Manchester United have been linked with several players with the potential to alleviate their problems.
While United have plenty of playmaking midfielders, the performance against Liverpool once again showed the tendency to get overrun by more dynamic opposition. One man repeatedly linked to offer a greater physical presence is Netherlands international Kevin Strootman. The 22-year-old has been described as the new Mark van Bommel in his homeland after a strong first season with PSV last term.
Already admired at United, according to the Daily Mirror, Strootman’s agent has now claimed that his client could be set for a move in the very near future.
“Strootman has had a good time in Eindhoven, but we decided that he wants to prove himself in a better league,” Chiel Dekker said, according to the Mirror.
“If an agreement is able to be reached with a potentially interested club, PSV will allow Kevin to leave in January.”
United are also thought to be interested in Everton’s Marouane Fellaini. The Belgium international has excelled at the start of the season and recently revealed that he thought this campaign could be his last at Goodison Park.
The 24-year-old was quickly forced to deny those comments and has now claimed that he is not pushing for a move away.
“I am happy here,” he said, according to Metro. “I play for a great club, with great players and wonderful fans. Every season I get better.”
Despite those words, Metro reports that United are preparing a £20 million move to bring Fellaini to Old Trafford.
Yet another midfield target reportedly emerged this week when TalkSport reported that Manchester United were one of the clubs monitoring the situation of Russia captain Igor Denisov. The 28-year-old’s future at Zenit St Petersburg is currently in doubt after he spoke out against the wages being paid to recent signings Hulk and Axel Witsel, which led to him being forced to play with the youth team.
United, Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City are now set to fight it out for Denisov’s signing, according to TalkSport. His age and the fact that he has never played outside of Russia make him an unlikely target for United, however.
United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is said to be ready to make a £5 million offer for Ajax youngster Viktor Fischer, according to Metro. The 18-year-old Danish forward made his mark during last season’s NextGen Series and has begun the current tournament in a similar vein with a hat-trick in last week’s 5-0 victory over Molde.
Denmark Under-19 coach Thomas Frank has said that Fischer has the quality to succeed at the very highest level.
“Fischer is special. He can be just like Messi or Ronaldo,” Frank said, according to Metro.
“He has their ambition and talent, and he always wants to score. He is hungry, always hungry, even if he has scored two or three times.”
While Europe’s biggest clubs are sure to be keeping tabs on Fischer, it would appear unlikely that he will be prized away from Ajax, given their reputation for developing young talent, at this early stage.