If there is one type of player currently lacking in the Manchester United dressing room, it's a tough-tackling, no-nonsense and commanding box-to-box midfielder.
Ever since Roy Keane left unceremoniously in 2005, United never came close to replacing the combative midfielder.
Fast forward to 2013, and a similar player seems to be available for a decent price in the region of £17 million. United have yet to make a concrete move for the Dutch international, however PSV ace Kevin Strootman has even declared in the past that he would like to make a move to the Premier League and would welcome for clubs to bid for him - taking him to the next level in the development of his career.
With Darren Fletcher's medical condition, it's a big question mark as to if and when he could make a return to the United squad. Paul Scholes' impending retirement still looms over Old Trafford and lastly, with the injury prone Anderson likely to be shown the exit at the end of the season, United will be left with two senior regulars in the middle of the park.
The over-reliance on Michael Carrick has been evident throughout this season and Tom Cleverley has also been making improvements in his game with first-team exposure. The other option United have is the untested Nick Powell who has shown promise.
These few players alone will not be adequate if United are to defend their title next season, assuming they do not falter and finally win their 20th title. This is where Strootman fits in perfectly.
He is just the type of player which the Red Devils have been lacking for eight years. His primary position is in the centre of midfield, he can also play as a holding midfielder or as a deep-lying playmaker.
Regardless of where he plays, he has the physical presence and command which will establish United's midfield dominance in any game. He is also technically gifted with incredible vision. His bullish, no-nonsense attitude will solve the accusations that United's midfield is at times a little too soft.
Perhaps it's time Sir Alex Ferguson releases under-performing and inconsistent players as he looks at bringing in newer players to secure the continued success of the team.
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