Germany’s stunning 7-1 victory over Brazil showed just how big a mistake Louis van Gaal could be making by not bringing midfielder Toni Kroos to Manchester United.
The 24-year-old is set to leave the Allianz Arena for the sunny shores of Spain, with Champions League holders Real Madrid set to land the player. But, he had been linked with a move to Old Traffod prior to Van Gaal’s appointment back in May.
His predecessor David Moyes had been keen to sign the midfielder to bolster the club’s ranks, and was also said to be keen on Cesc Fabregas who he had bid for the previous summer whilst the midfielder was at Barcelona.
Instead, his sacking sparked Van Gaal’s arrival, and hence the end of a prolonged lust to bring the German international to Old Trafford.
Ander Herrera has already been snapped up from Athletic Bilbao, with the Dutchman instead focusing on efforts to bring either Arturo Vidal or Nigel De Jong to club and to offload deadweight such as Tom Cleverley and Marouane Fellaini.
Kroos thrived on Tuesday evening in Belo Horizonte, scoring twice and constantly carving the Brazilian defence wide open. David Luiz and Dante, both past winners of the Champions League, failed to fill the void left by the inspirational Thiago Silva as Kroos and his team-mates ran riot.
Manchester United have for too long missed a player as artistic as the German midfielder, a true heir to the Paul Scholes throne. Herrera has potential to be special, compared to Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta, but his stock is not quite as high as the Bayern ace.
He was excellent as Munich knocked the Premier League outfit out of the Champions League in April, with Scholes himself recommending Kroos to then-manager Moyes as a suitable figure for the Red Devils team.
The Scot’s chances of luring such a player to Manchester, given his poor maiden season as Sir Alex Ferguson’s successor, would have been questionable, but he was seen in constant close contact with the player’s agent.
It was well documented that he was eager to improve Ferguson’s side from his first day in the job, but despite luring Fellaini and Juan Mata from Everton and Chelsea respectively, also failed in big money moves for Thiago Alcantara and, although less likely, ex-Red Cristiano Ronaldo.
Kroos has been a vital cog of the Bayern machine, but will instead be the newest Galactico to arrive at the Santiago Bernabeu. The Spanish giants are gaining a gem, a footballer of the highest calibre, and who can help fight off a rejuvenated Barcelona in the wake of the club’s imminent purchase of Liverpool striker Luis Suarez.
Only time will tell if Van Gaal’s judgement is correct.
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