Manchester United target free to leave Aston Villa with replacement nearly signed

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Manchester United target Ron Vlaar will be free to leave Aston Villa on a free transfer once they confirm that Micah Richards has signed, reports the Daily Express.

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The Villans have apparently beaten Liverpool to the signing of the Manchester City man by offering him the chance to play regularly at centre-back. Vlaar will now be allowed to leave, in part to make room for the England international in the back line. This is after the Midlands outfit were disappointed in their attempts to keep the 30-year-old at Villa Park.

This development will be good news for the Red Devils, who have been linked with the former ever since Louis van Gaal took over as manager at Old Trafford. The 63-year-old had great success with the Netherlands national team while Vlaar played at the heart of their defence, helping them to the semi finals of the last World Cup.

At the same time United look to be in need of a new centre-back. Marcos Rojo and Daley Blind both played there at times in the last campaign, but throughout their careers are more used to featuring on the left. Meanwhile Phil Jones and Jonny Evans made errors at some important times to highlight the need for reinforcements. The extra competition of the Champions League also means their squad will need bolstering.

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