With injuries to Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic becoming more and more regular it looks like Manchester United may go after a new centre-back this summer.
One target mentioned, and championed by a lot of United fans, is Brazilian international and Vasco da Gama defender, Dede.
Dede is well over six-feet tall and is widely regarded as one of the best centre-backs playing in Brazil, as well as one of the new stars of the national team, as Luiz Felipe Scolari tries to build a team capable of winning the World Cup on home turf next year.
The defender can also play as sweeper and has played more than 120 games for his club, scoring 14 goals, and making seven international appearances so far.
He is a huge favourite with Vasco da Gama fans and has won several individual awards in Brazil for his impressive defensive performances.
In 2011 he won the Copa do Brasil with Vasco and made his international debut the same year.
So could he soon be a United player?
His contract runs out in 2014 so if Vasco are to make money on him, or keep him longer, something will soon have to be decided.
He could be reasonably priced as most Brazilian players usually are when moving from their domestic league, though if he stars at the 2014 World Cup his price will surely rocket.
United already have Rafael, Fabio and Anderson on their books, which is always helpful when trying to persuade a player of the same nationality to move to a foreign country.
With rumours that Vidic may leave in the summer, and Ferdinand yet to agree an extension on his current contract, it looks as though a defender will be a priority.
Phil Jones has looked fantastic at times, but has had his injury problems, and the same could be said for Chris Smalling.
Argentinian Ezequiel Garay has also been linked with a move to Old Trafford, but after his failure at Real Madrid perhaps United will take a chance on another South American.
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