Manchester United are in pole position to secure the signing of versatile Ajax star Daley Blind, who can play either as a holding midfielder or a left-back, ahead of Premier League rivals Liverpool and Tottenham.
According to the Express, who cite Italian sources, newly-appointed United boss Louis van Gaal is ready to make an offer for the 24-year-old - who is part of his Netherlands squad for next month’s World Cup finals - after monitoring the in-demand midfielder.
Blind has played a pivotal role in helping Ajax win four consecutive Eredivisie titles under Frank de Boer and was rewarded for his standout performances by being handed the coveted 2014 Dutch Footballer of the Year accolade, previously won by high-profile players Luis Suarez, Wilfried Bony and Jan Vertonghen.
His connection with Van Gaal currently makes United favourites to secure his services. The Red Devils’ boss will have as much as £200m to strengthen his squad this summer and will be fully aware that, as well as being a capable holding midfielder, Blind made his name as a dynamic left-back.
Had De Boer been chosen to succeed Tim Sherwood at Tottenham, the north London outfit would have been front of the queue to sign the son of iconic former Netherlands international Danny Blind. However, it seems Spurs are poised to appoint Southampton’s Mauricio Pochettino as their new manager later this week.
Liverpool, meanwhile, may have viewed Blind as a potential long-term replacement for Steven Gerrard. But, as things stand, it’s the Reds’ fierce rivals who are expected to secure Blind’s services ahead of the 2014/15 campaign.