Manchester United will increase their interest in Daley Blind this summer in the event that Patrice Evra departs the club.
Old Trafford stalwart Evra is supposedly close to finalising a somewhat surprising move to Serie A champions Juventus and, according to reports from the Manchester Evening News, new Red Devils boss Louis van Gaal will step up his pursuit of Dutch international Blind as a potential replacement.
Evra to Juventus?
The prospective loss of Evra was perhaps not something Van Gaal or Manchester United were particularly prepared for this summer, with the Frenchman only having signed a one-year extension to his contract two months ago.
July's purchase of talented England left-back Luke Shaw - believed to be for a fee in the region of £30 million - may have changed Evra's thinking however, with it considered unlikely that he would remain as the club's permanent first-choice option at left-back.
It is certainly understandable why a move to Turin would appeal to Evra. Although he has obviously not been short on silverware and winners medals during his highly-successful eight-year stint in English football, Juventus are simply dominating in Serie A at present and he is almost guaranteed to win additional trophies before he retires.
With the likes of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic having already left Manchester United, the departure of Evra would see Van Gaal lose another hugely experienced member of a squad that will need strong leadership if they are to make an immediate return to title contention following the notable blip suffered during the reign of David Moyes.
His influence on former Southampton prodigy Shaw would also have been invaluable.
Watch: The latest Manchester United transfer news
Blind to arrive at Old Trafford?
Van Gaal will have the complete inside track on Blind, of course, with the 24-year-old - who started his country's heartbreaking World Cup semi-final penalty-shootout defeat to Argentina in Sao Paulo on Wednesday night - becoming a regular in the Netherlands' international setup under his watch.
While he did not particularly stand out during that aforementioned loss at the Arena Corinthians, Blind has received credit at the tournament - most notably for his crucial part in the shock 5-1 destruction of holders Spain in the group stages.
Just how difficult it would prove to prise Blind - whose father Danny won 42 international caps and is currently a member of Van Gaal's backroom staff - away from current Eredivisie champions Ajax remains to be seen.
However, with the player believed to be valued at around the £12.5 million mark, it certainly should't prove to be a damaging drain on Manchester United's significant resources.
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