Juventus ace Arturo Vidal has admitted that he is still struggling with the knee injury that ultimately cost him a move to Manchester United over the summer.
The Chilean emerged as the Red Devils top target during boss Louis van Gaal's first transfer window in charge at Old Trafford. However the deal fell through, partly because Juventus didn't want to sell but also because there were major concerns over his fitness.
Vidal underwent knee surgery before the World Cup and failed to complete a full 90 minutes in Brazil, while in his seven league starts to date this term the 27-year-old has been subbed off on four occasions.
His injury didn't seem to impede him during Juventus' win against rivals Torino last evening - in which the midfielder scored the opener - but he admits he's still struggling. “The knee caused – and is causing – me problems," Vidal said. "But I’m trying to get in top shape.”
That will likely cause concern at Manchester United if they were planning to launch a raid in the January window. Recent reports have suggested that Juventus are more willing to let Vidal leave now after he was dropped following an incident outside a nightclub in the early hours of the morning two days before a game in October.
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Vidal hasn't exactly been on top form this season either and reports have suggested that Manchester United could well swoop - but any chance of that now appears over. The Red Devils have already had their fingers burnt by one player with a knee problem, Radamel Falcao, this season and are unlikely to take another risk.
The Colombian striker has joined Manchester United on a loan deal with a clause to make the move permanent at the end of the current campaign. He's started just three games this season and scored just once because of an unrelated calf problem, while reportedly pocketing wages in the region of £265,000-per-week.
Instead of Vidal, Manchester United are believed to be eyeing up Roma's Kevin Strootman as an alternative, although whether a deal can be done next month remains to be seen.