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Manchester United target Ron Vlaar valued at £12m by Aston Villa

Aston Villa are holding out for 12 million pounds from Manchester United for Ron Vlaar ahead of any January move, club sources have told ESPN FC.

Vlaar was one of United manager Louis van Gaal's key defenders during the 2014 World Cup with the Netherlands, and the centre-back is eager to link up with his old international boss, having already agreed personal terms on a provisional basis.

The 29-year-old's contract is up at the end of the season, when he would be available on a free transfer, but that has not necessarily helped United's hand in negotiations.

Villa are aware that Van Gaal is eager to do business in January to address United's ongoing issues at the back, and that there is a paucity of top-level defenders available on the market.

United have appeared to lack leadership and organisation in defence following the departures of senior defenders Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand and Patrice Evra in the summer.

Louis van Gaal knows Ron Vlaar well from his time as Netherlands boss.

Although Vlaar would not be seen at the same level as primary targets, such as Borussia Dortmund's Mats Hummels, Van Gaal knows he can instantly slot in to the system while also providing an experienced voice and sense of authority.

As such, the Dutchman would represent a solid medium-term option who can address immediate problems.

Another name that has been mentioned at Old Trafford as a potential defensive recruitment is Ryan Shawcross. The 27-year-old English defender came through the ranks at United, before moving to Stoke City.

No actual movement has been made in that regard, but sources have told ESPN FC he is seen as an option.

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