Manchester United to sign Aleksandar Dragovic after Arsenal snub

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Manchester United are set to complete a deal to sign Dynamo Kiev centre-back Aleksandar Dragovic after the Austria international rejected a move to Arsenal.

It was revealed by Sport Witness on Monday that Dragovic was a boyhood Arsenal fan who ‘dreamt’ of playing for the Gunners - but it appears that United have successfully convinced him to move to Old Trafford.

The Metro understand that Dragovic has rejected the chance to join Arsenal, potentially because there would eventually be stiffer competition for first-team places at the Emirates Stadium following the planned arrival of Gabriel Paulista from Villarreal.

Why did Dragovic snub Arsenal?

Gabriel will be competing with the likes of Per Mertesacker, Laurent Koscielny and Calum Chambers for first-team football once he finalises his £11 million (Guardian) transfer from El Madrigal over the coming days - and Dragovic may feel he stands a better chance of nailing down a starting spot at Old Trafford instead.

Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans have all failed to convince following the arrival of Louis van Gaal last summer, while Marcos Rojo is still adjusting to life as a Premier League player following his summer move from Sporting Lisbon.

As a result there’s every chance that Dragovic, who spent two years with FC Basel prior to his move to Dynamo Kiev in July 2013, would be expected to slot straight into Manchester United’s back-line.

Dragovic: United's new centre-back?

Van Gaal is expected to stick with his favoured 3-5-2 formation going forwards - and Dragovic could be selected as the centre-piece in that back-three alongside Jones and Rojo at right and left centre-back, respectively.

A defender of considerable quality and potential, Manchester United have turned their attention to the Austrian late in the January transfer window after being linked with a host of top-class centre-backs.

Borussia Dortmund captain Mats Hummels was believed to be amongst Van Gaal’s first-choice defensive option, while the likes of Bruno Martins-Indi, Ron Vlaar and the aforementioned Gabriel Paulista have also been linked over recent weeks.

While Dragovic might not be a household name just yet, Manchester United will hope the talented centre-back can follow in the footsteps of former captain Nemanja Vidic, by arriving in January and establishing himself as a vital members of the Red Devils’ first team.

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