Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic is a January transfer target for Real Madrid according to the Daily Mail.

The 30-year-old Serbian stopper has made an indifferent start to the 2011-12 campaign, having spent part of the season out on the sidelines.

Red Devils boss Sir Alex Ferguson is understandably keen to keep Vidic at Old Trafford, but according to Sportsmail, will allow his captain to leave the reigning Barclays Premier League champions if Real meet his asking price.

With doubts over the long-term future of Rio Ferdinand, selling Vidic at a time when young defenders such as Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans are still developing, would appear to be a huge risk for Manchester United.

But Ferguson has concerns over the player's commitment to the Old Trafford cause, amid continued speculation linking him with a move to Spain.

After returning from a recent calf injury that his restricted Vidic to just three league appearances so far this term, Ferguson chose to leave his captain in the stands for the 6-1 home defeat to Manchester City.

However, Vidic has since earned praise from his manager after returning to help United keep clean sheets against Everton and Sunderland in the past two weekends.

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Nemanja Vidic