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Van Gaal keen on Strootman

ESPN staff
June 5, 2014
Kevin Strootman (left) has worked with Louis van Gaal in the Netherlands set up © PA Photos

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal is interested in Roma's Kevin Strootman, according to the midfielder's agent.

But Strootman, who Van Gaal has worked with in his capacity as Netherlands coach, is unlikely to be a summer signing as the 24-year-old is expected to be out until October with a knee injury.

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United's chief executive vice chairman Ed Woodward will also have his work cut out to complete the deal in January with Roma, who have Strootman under contract for the next four years, determined to keep him.

Chiel Dekker, Strootman's agent, told The Guardian: "He won't be back playing until autumn. That's the time schedule at the moment. He is of interest to Louis van Gaal but not related to Manchester United at this point."

Former United manager David Moyes also scouted Strootman, who joined Roma from PSV Eindhoven last summer, and Dekker believes Van Gaal could attempt to sign the midfielder in a future transfer window.

"Could be but he's in Rome and he had a terrific season," Dekker added. "There has been nothing between the clubs or between Louis and Kevin: they know each other and like each other.

"Roma do not want to sell. The first thing is it's all between the clubs. And it's also a very difficult decision because he has to choose between a fantastic club in Rome, a club that bought him and supported him while he was injured and [then] you have his personal coach of the national team at United.

"The clubs have to decide. He's very happy at Rome, he's happy to stay because they play Champions League next season and happy to recover [from] his injury, so at this stage we are not part of any discussion."

United are expected to sign a central midfielder this summer but Van Gaal has decided against pursuing the long-term target Toni Kroos.

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