Manchester United will revive their interest in crocked midfielder Kevin Strootman next year, and plan to make a £25 million bid for the AS Roma star when the transfer window reopens in January.
According to the Daily Star the 24-year-old is on course to make a full return to action from the cruciate knee ligament injury he suffered in March by December, fuelling speculation that Louis van Gaal will make a bid for his services at the turn of the year.
The new Red Devils boss is a huge admirer of Strootman, and would certainly have selected him in his 23-man squad for the World Cup in Brazil this summer, had he not been cruelly sidelined in a Serie 'A' match against Napoli.
After what is likely to be nine months on the sidelines, Manchester United's alleged plans for an offer for the playmaker could be construed as a massive gamble, and might be better to wait until next summer to fully determine that Strootman is injury-free.
However, Van Gaal's determination to quickly turn Manchester United back into serious title contenders could prompt an early attempt to lure the Holland international to the Premier League.
Strootman was pictured on Tuesday returning to the Serie 'A' giants as he continues his rehabilitation, and a statement was later released on Roma's website to update fans about his ongoing situation.
"Kevin Strootman underwent a check-up and biomechanical assessments under the supervision of professor Cerulli in Arezzo today," it read.
"The tests confirmed that the midfielder is making good progress with his recovery program."
Strootman only moved to Italy from PSV Eindhoven in a €17 million deal last summer, and after impressing in the first half of his debut campaign at Stadio Olimpico saw his progression in Rudi Garcia's team cut short by injury.
His fine performances have added to his growing reputation as one of the brightest young midfielders in Europe though, and that will be reflected in the eventual fee that Manchester United would have to pay for his services.
Having already completed the capture of Ander Herrera from Athletic Bilbao, Van Gaal will attempt to strengthen his midfield department further with the acquisition of Strootman in the mid-season window.
Manchester United have also been heavily linked with moves for Sami Khedira and Arturo Vidal, but irrespective of who else they may sign this summer, their interest in the Roma star will remain.