Man Utd transfer round-up: Cuadrado and Sneijder
New Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal, whose Netherlands team bowed out of the World Cup in a painful penalty shootout loss to Argentina, can finally begin to turn his full attention to the Old Trafford hot seat.
With only a third-place play-off to compete for as Clockwork Orange coach, the rumour mill has responded, and the Red Devils, 9/2 to win the Premier League next season, are being linked with a raft of new recruits.
Colombia and Fiorentina winger Cuadrado impressed alongside James Rodriguez for the Coffee Growers at the World Cup, and Van Gaal is reportedly interested in bringing the inspirational wideman to Old Trafford.
Also able to play as a full back, the South American terrorised opposing defenders as he bombed up and down Colombia’s right flank, netting once and providing four assists for his teammates.
With 11 league goals for Fiorentina last term, Cuadrado has illustrated he can be more than just the support act, and could play a key role for Van Gaal’s Red Devils.
The former Bayern Munich and Barcelona boss prefers dynamic wide attackers who can also support the defence, and employed the use of wing backs with the Netherlands at the World Cup, making Cuadrado an ideal option.
United will face competition to prise the pacy Colombian from Serie A though, with Barca, Liverpool and Arsenal all set to vie for his services.
Sneijder was instrumental for Van Gaal’s Netherlands side at the World Cup, enjoying somewhat of a renaissance, with performances reminiscent of his form for Inter Milan in their famous 2010 treble-winning season under Jose Mourinho.
Galatasaray have stamped a £16m price tag on the Dutch midfield maestro, though, after his exploits in Brazil, including one goal and two assists, helped propel Clockwork Orange to the semi-finals.
Van Gaal is apparently keen to bring the playmaker to Manchester with him, where he could link up with compatriot Robin van Persie and add much need creativity to the midfield.
With Sneijder already 30 years of age, and having reportedly turned down the chance to sign for the Red Devils previously in 2010, it remains to be seen whether United would want to spend north of £10m.
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Speculation that United are making a move for Wolfsburg and Switzerland left back Ricardo Rodriguez continues, with Patrice Evra edging ever closer to a switch to Serie A giants Juventus.
Angel Di Maria is also being monitored by Van Gaal, but Real Madrid will not sell cheaply and, with PSG apparently registering their interest, the potential fee, rumoured to be upwards of £40m, could be a stumbling block.
United, odds-on at 8/15 to finish in the top four this season, are also set to compete with Premier League rivals Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea, for Benfica wonderkid Joao Filipe. The 15-year-old is a winger, compared in style to former United superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, who the Red Devils signed as a teenager from Sporting Lisbon back in 2003.