United switch targets after Strootman blow.Manchester United could be set to switch their focus from Kevin Strootman to his AS Roma team-mate Miralem Pjanic after learning that the Dutchman is not for sale.
The Red Devils are desperate to bring in a new creative midfielder in the January transfer window, and Strootman is thought to have been one of Louis van Gaal’s main targets in that position.
However, with Roma sporting director Walter Sabatini insisting today that Strootman is too important to sell, United could try their luck with another of the star players at the Stadio Olimpico, with Pjanic emerging as a top class playmaker in recent times as well.
The Bosnian international was strongly linked with the likes of Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain prior to signing a new contract earlier this year, but his fine displays have kept him on the radar of a number of top clubs, with United now thought to be ready to step up their interest in him.
Pjanic would likely command a fee of around £40m, and it is looking increasingly clear that United’s big spending of the summer is not over as they continue to eye big-name signings such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Arturo Vidal, who are both also likely to cost vast amounts of money.
Like Pjanic, Vidal is valued at around £40m or more, while the possible re-signing of Ronaldo from Real Madrid could set the Old Trafford club back around £60m, which would break their transfer record that they set this summer with the signing of Angel Di Maria.
Although Roma have been firm on Strootman, they did allow Mehdi Benatia to leave this summer, and could be open to selling Pjanic for the right price, with United keen to do business for the immensely talented 24-year-old.