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Manchester United reach ‘verbal agreement’ for Lazio defender Stefan de Vrij

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Man United transfer news

Manchester United are leading the race to sign Lazio’s highly-rated defender, Stefan de Vrij, although the Red Devils are likely to face competition from Chelsea and AC Milan.

According to reports from Il Messaggero, the centre-back is likely to be heading towards Old Trafford in the summer. José Mourinho is a big admirer of the defender, and United are believed to have reached a verbal agreement to sign the Lazio star for €35m. The Dutch international has only 12 months remaining on his contract, and he is widely expected to leave the Serie A giants in the summer.

Manchester United have plenty of defenders in their ranks, with Mourinho having options in the form of Eric Bailly, Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Daley Blind and Marcos Rojo. The form of Jones and Rojo has made a huge difference in recent months as United not only have climbed up the ladder but also are looking to mount a serious challenge in the top four race.

In the summer, Mourinho will probably look to add a defender of his liking, and it seems De Vrij is his first choice target. The Dutch defender is a solid defender whose positional awareness and decision-making skills are his real strengths. De Vrij probably wants to play in the Premier League as well, and it seems Mourinho is ready to launch a £30m move for the Lazio defender.

De Vrij returned to action in July after recovering from a knee injury, and has quickly re-established himself as one of the country’s best in his position. Last month, a report from Il Tempo claimed that Chelsea were looking to sign the Dutchman. His price tag is relatively high considering the length of his contract, and it remains to be seen whether Chelsea or United engage in a bidding war for the 24-year-old next summer.

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