Chile star Arturo Vidal could well become Louis van Gaal’s third major signing of this summer, after it was revealed that he wants to move to Old Trafford ahead of Stamford Bridge or the Emirates Stadium.
The Daily Express, citing reports in Italy, claims that the 27-year-old would favour a move to Manchester United over both Chelsea and Arsenal, despite the fact that the Red Devils can’t promise him Champions League football. Van Gaal’s interest in the playmaker has been well-publicised, and it would appear that he now has the upper hand on both Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger.
Reports suggest it could take as much as £48million to lure Vidal away from Juventus, as the Turin giants see him as perhaps their most influential player. Consistently brilliant performances have meant that he has been a core member of a midfield which also contains Paul Pogba, Andrea Pirlo and Claudio Marchisio, and even if offered a substantial package Juve chiefs would be reluctant to see him leave.
Despite that Vidal himself may well see a switch to the Premier League as the ideal way to further his already impressive career. Whilst in Italy he has won the Scudetto three times in a row, his fortunes in the Champions League have not been nearly as rosy, and a transfer to another European superpower could aid any ambitions he has of one day lifting domestic football’s biggest crown.
Regardless of the fact that they won’t be competing in Europe next year Van Gaal’s arrival has definitely given them more pulling power than they had under David Moyes. The veteran Dutchman is as experienced as they come and has an esteemed reputation which would naturally appeal to the game’s biggest names.
As for United’s need for a player like Vidal their lack of success last season evidenced a flaw in their setup. Whilst the likes of Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie, Juan Mata and new signing Ander Herrera are all comfortable going forward, there’s no questioning that Juventus’ key man would markedly improve their link-up play.
More defence-minded assets might be Van Gaal’s priority, but it would come as a huge shock if he passed up on the opportunity to land Vidal.
Chelsea & Arsenal interest
It’s no secret that United have strong competition for Vidal’s signature, and this makes it all the more significant that he is said to be angling for an Old Trafford move. Two parties that won’t be pleased to hear the news are Chelsea and Arsenal, both of whom are said to be keen on the playmaker themselves.
As Mourinho has only just signed Francesc Fabregas he’s unlikely to be too disgruntled, but Wenger will feel peeved if he loses out on yet another transfer target to one of his biggest rivals.