Man United close in on £42.5m double Italian raid

Manchester United are said to be lining up fresh approaches for Lazio pair Felipe Anderson and Stefan de Vrij after seeing their initial bids rejected by the Serie A side, according to the Daily Express.

Italian paper Corriere della Sera claims Lazio knocked back United’s offer as the Red Devils prepare to ramp up their recruitment drive ahead of the start of the new season.

United have already brought in five new faces this summer, but only one has been more defensively minded – Torino’s Matteo Darmian arriving for £12.7m – but their search for a new centre-back has proved to be a greater struggle.

Respective moves for Spanish-based pair Sergio Ramos and Nicolas Otamendi have been knocked back, leaving Louis van Gaal stuck back on square one.

Van Gaal had been hoping to reunite with de Vrij after working with the 23-year-old at last summer’s World Cup, but the Italians weren’t tempted to take the £18m on offer.

Similarly, with Angel Di Maria on the verge of an exit, United are keen to bring in a replacement, and had identified the £24.3m man as the ideal replacement.

However, with plenty of time remaining in the current window, United are preparing themselves to go back in with fresh optimism of landing the pair.

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