Manchester United Transfer News: Big Names Open to Old Trafford Challenge

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistJune 15, 2014

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - JUNE 14:  Louis van Gaal, Netherlands national football team manager looks on during the Netherlands training session at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil held at the Estadio Jose Bastos Padilha Gavea on June 14, 2014 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Manchester United need to strengthen significantly in the summer transfer window in order to improve upon a terrible season in 2013-14.

The Red Devils finished seventh in the English top flight last term and David Moyes lost his job as manager as a result.

Louis van Gaal has been put in place to guide the Manchester outfit, and he will be looking to bring in improved quality as he prepares his side for the new season.

Let's take a look at some of the players linked with United, and those who look the most likely to make a switch to Old Trafford. 

Bayern Buys

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 23:  Bastian Schweinsteiger of Bayern Muenchen looks dejected during the UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg match between Real Madrid and FC Bayern Muenchen at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on April 23, 2014 in Madrid, Spain.
Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Since the appointment of Van Gaal, United have been linked with a whole host of players from German champions Bayern Munich.

The likes of Toni Kroos and Thomas Mueller have consistently been rumoured as targets, but according to The Guardian's football editor Marcus Christenson, only Bastian Schweinsteiger looks like possibly making the switch from Bavaria to Manchester: 

Central midfield is an area United have been weak in for many years now, and the 29-year-old would go a long way to solving that particular problem.

Schweinsteiger has been at Bayern for his entire career but is not necessarily the best fit in Pep Guardiola's style, so he could be lured away to pair up with his old boss Van Gaal, who is a big fan of the German international, per football writer Tom McDermott:

He played 23 times in Bayern's 2013-14 Bundesliga-winning campaign and scored four times while also providing four assists per

The German international would certainly add steel and quality to a lacklustre United midfield, and he could be the central marshal that the Red Devils have been lacking for some time, going back to the departure of Roy Keane.

His ability to maintain possession and control a game is currently missing at Old Trafford, per CNN's John Sinnott:

Schweinsteiger has won everything there is to win at club level and would be a star addition to both the Premier League and United.

Vidal Interest 

CATANIA, ITALY - MARCH 23:  Arturo Vidal of Juventus during the Serie A match between Calcio Catania and Juventus at Stadio Angelo Massimino on March 23, 2014 in Catania, Italy.  (Photo by Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images)
Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images

Juventus' Arturo Vidal is another central midfielder who reportedly is a target of Van Gaal's who would be a terrific addition to the Old Trafford outfit.

The 62-year-old Dutch manager has voiced his admiration for the 27-year-old, who seems to be a genuine potential signing, per Chisnaga Malata in the Daily Star: "I always wanted to buy Vidal when he was at Bayer Leverkusen but he went to Juventus," Van Gaal said.

Vidal contributes from midfield in both a defensive and attacking capacity and scored 11 goals and provided five assists as Juventus won Serie A last season, per

Juventus are reportedly happy to let him go for the right price, and with Van Gaal's obvious interest, the Chilean may well be on his way to Old Trafford, per BBC Sport's Shamoon Hafez:

United are seemingly looking at the right calibre of player in the positions they need to strengthen the most. Their inability to keep hold of the ball and lack of control in midfield was a remarkable factor of their play last season.

Either one of Schweinsteiger or Vidal would go a long way to solving this problem and help United return to their usual position of title contenders and Champions League competitors.

Once Van Gaal is done with coaching the Netherlands at the World Cup he will no doubt move swiftly to sign his desired targets and plan for the new Premier League campaign.


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