African star can be Manchester United's answer to Yaya Toure - or Arsenal's new Vieira

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With all attention on Chelsea's Frank Lampard, 34, as the most viable option as a centre midfield signing for Manchester United, Victor Wanyama has somewhat slipped off the radar.

But is Lampard really what the club needs? At 34, the England veteran seems to be nearing the end of his career. Wanyama, on the other hand, at 21 has his best years to come and can only progress from his outstanding performance - which has drawn much attention to the Kenyan international - on the world stage in Celtic's 2-1 victory over Barcelona in the Champions League group stage.

However, the likes of Manchester United and Arsenal have been tracking the player for the majority of his career in Glasgow. Arsenal were preparing to put in a bid for the Kenyan international in the 2012 summer transfer window, but nothing came of it. Wanyama who moved to Celtic for a fee of £900,000 has recently been rated by his Manager Neil Lennon at £25 million. Some fee.

But £25 million may not be a bad investment for the Old Trafford club. The Red Devils have conceded 26 league goals this season, almost matching the 33 they conceded last year in only 21 games. Wanyama, not only a defensive midfielder who is useful going forward, is also comfortable playing at centre back, where he has appeared for Celtic on numerous occasions.

His strength and size, which allowed him to shut down Messi, makes him similar to Yaya Toure; a player United have struggled to contain in recent matches. Wanyama recently has been hailed by 'Midfield Maestro', Andrea Pirlo, as being like 'a young Patrick Viera'.

Perhaps this is what Arsenal are looking for in the Kenyan. Ahead of the last 16 clash between Serie A outfit Juventus and Celtic, Pirlo has fears over Wanyama, "he is big and can be a presence in the middle with his tackling."

Wanyama is Champions League bound and is probably not the best option for either Arsenal or United in the current January window. But come August, if the Kenyan continues to turn down contract offers from his Glasgow club, we may well see him turn out in the Premier League at the start of next season.

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