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Arsenal old boy one of Van Gaal’s three key Man Utd targets

| 24.05.2014

Manchester United and Holland manager Louis van Gaal has reportedly thrown his new club’s plans to sign Bayern Munich’s Toni Kroos in the bin, and hopes to change Barcelona’s Cesc Fabregas’ mind about an Old Trafford move.

The 62-year-old is also thought to have placed Roma’s Kevin Strootman and Bayern’s Arjen Robben – who are both current Dutch internationals – at the top of his target list alongside the former Arsenal midfielder.

Fabregas failed to cement a first-team starting spot for Los Blaugrana after turning down a move to David Moyes’ United last summer, yet goes into the World Cup as a live under-the-radar 50/1 chance to finish top scorer with largely striker-less defending champions Spain, having notched 13 times in 2013/14 nonetheless.

La Roja are 7/10 to finish above Holland, Chile and Australia in Group B, and while Giallorossi midfielder Strootman won’t be present due to the knee injury that rules him out of Brazil, Van Gaal will have ample opportunity to bend Robben’s ear.

The pair also worked together at FCB, but a move for the former Chelsea winger may alienate fans who believed Robben was on his way to the north west a decade ago, before Roman Abramovich performed one of his early Stamford Bridge muscle flexes.

There would be little love lost between the 30-year-old, who has played a key role in his side knocking the Red Devils out of the Champions League twice since 2010, and the Stretford End faithful should a move come off, but both Van Gaal and Robben have more pressing matters first at hand.

Holland may have only lost the last World Cup final to Spain on penalties, but they also crashed out at the group stage of Euro 2012 and haven’t really shaped like a side capable of big things in Brazil.

With dangerous outsiders Chile expected to suit their surroundings, the 1/1 about the South Americans emerging from Group B rates a better bet than the 1/2 available on Holland.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Alex Fortune