Manchester United are reportedly set to make a huge bid for long-term midfield target Arturo Vidal if the Chilean can pass a stringent medical.
Reports suggest new Red Devils boss Louis van Gaal is eager to bring Vidal to Old Trafford to strengthen United's weak-looking midfield.
However, there are concerns over the Juventus star's long-term fitness considering his knee issues, which resulted in him undergoing surgery before the World Cup in Brazil earlier this summer.
Thus United want him to pass a medical before they discuss personal terms with the 27-year-old or submit a bid to the Serie A champions, according to a source of the Daily Star's Jeremy Cross:
No fee has been agreed yet, but United are increasingly optimistic they will be allowed to put Vidal through a medical before any price is discussed properly. They basically want to check on the knee and make sure he is fit before going through the process of talking money with Juventus. And it seems Juventus are happy to go along with it, even though it's not the usual way of doing things in a transfer.
Previous reports in Italy suggested Vidal had already signed a five-year deal with the Old Trafford outfit worth £47 million, with the player set to be paid £182,000 a week, per Jack Wilson in the Daily Star.
However, Cross' piece reports United's denial of any deal already being agreed, although it does suggest they are prepared to pay a club-record £45 million for Vidal if he passes the medical.
Despite the large transfer fee, United will be desperately hoping that Vidal can prove his fitness, as he is exactly the kind of player needed at Old Trafford and one of the best midfielders around, per football writer Omid Zamani:
@MrSid_Singh I'd take Vidal with 2 dodgy knees over Strootman + Kroos, Vidal is from another planet, best box-to-box midfielder in the World— Omid Zamani (@Juventus__fan) August 7, 2014
An authoritative and aggressive player, Vidal is a goalscoring threat, a magnificent distributor of the ball and terrific at tackling back and defending, per WhoScored.com:
Arturo Vidal: Has made at least 60 more tackles (459) than any other player in Serie A in the last 3 seasons #juve— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) July 31, 2014
He is the kind of player United have been missing since the departure of Roy Keane in 2005 and would solve a long-term issue in central midfield.
Having already added Ander Herrera this summer, United would be well set to return to the top of the Premier League with the signing of Vidal, although a new centre-back is likely needed also.
But it seems that United—sensibly—are eager to make sure of Vidal's fitness before splashing out for his services. Red Devils fans will hope he passes with flying colours so he can move to Old Trafford in time for the start of the Premier League season.