Wesley Sneijder being linked with a transfer to Manchester United each summer is almost as certain as day becoming night and, huzzah, we have our first one of 2014. This time, however, the Netherlands playmaker has essentially flung his own name into the rumour mill.
The link is easily made, of course, with Manchester United having a long held interest in Sneijder dating back three years or so, and with his international coach Louis van Gaal set to take the manager’s position at Old Trafford after the World Cup.
Van Gaal has been credited with interest in a plethora of players currently under his command in Brazil, and several could well follow him to Manchester United once he succeeds David Moyes. Sneijder may not be one of these, but he was asked about potentially being among Van Gaal’s number at club level.
Sneijder initially played it with a relatively straight bat - stating that he is content with Galatasaray. But then he continued to provide an answer that we speculation hounds wanted, and did not rule out a hypothetical move to Old Trafford.
“I am happy at Galatasaray, I have established myself at the club and have settled in,” Sneijder told reporters.
“However, if van Gaal were to make me an offer, I would have to at least consider it. Nobody from the Netherlands can simply reject van Gaal.”
Is Sneijder the man for Manchester United?
Sneijder, a player of supreme quality of which there is no doubt, is not the player Manchester United need. A few years ago, yes. But now? Unfortunately not, even with Van Gaal the man to exact the best from him.
Manchester United have moved on from Sneijder, and now have numerous players able to perform more effectively in his favoured role of something approaching a traditional No.10. In fact, this is the only position in which United can boast several top quality options.
Wayne Rooney, Adnan Januzaj and Shinji Kagawa will all be competing to assume this role under their new manager, and can all arguably contribute more readily than Sneijder. There, is of course, the possibility Sneijder could be encouraged to rein in his attacking ambitions and take a role of greater responsibility in the Manchester United midfield, but he has surely missed his chance to stake a claim as the Paul Scholes successor they require.