Rumours in recent days have indicated that the Chilean is the Red Devils’ number one target, with talk that personal terms and a fee have been all but agreed with Juventus and the player.
But now it is understood that LVG actually prefers Strootman, who is currently out of action with a serious knee injury.
The Dutchman is unlikely to be back to full fitness until the start of the winter period, but van Gaal is such a big fan of the 24-year-old that he’s willing to wait until January to push through a deal.
The now Old Trafford chief coached Strootman while in charge of the Holland national team, and was believed to have been disappointed to have lost him to fitness issues for the World Cup.
Even though he has money to spend, he is ready to hold off on signing players in favour of snatching the enforcer from Roma, and may well hand the likes of Tom Cleverley and Marouane Fellaini increased first-team roles in the meantime.
The Italian side are against the idea of offloading their star, but they could be tempted by making a big profit on a player they only signed last year.
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