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Van Wolfswinkel agent expects rumours

The agent of Sporting Lisbon forward Ricky Van Wolfswinkel is unsurprised that Manchester United have been linked with a move for his client, but insisted the Dutchman is happy in Portugal.

Van Wolfswinkel, 22, plundered 17 goals for Eredivisie side FC Utrecht last season to earn himself a move to Sporting - with the Dutchman drawing comparisons with prolific compatriot Ruud van Nistelrooy.

United assistant manager Mike Phelan confirmed last week that the reigning Premier League champions were monitoring Van Wolfswinkel, though he was coy on talk of a possible swoop.

"We have obviously known Van Wolfswinkel for a long time," Phelan told Record. "He is a young striker, very talented, who has been growing in the last few seasons. A club like Manchester United carefully follow many players all over the world."

United have an excellent relationship with Sporting having previously taken Cristiano Ronaldo and Nani from the Lisbon outfit to Old Trafford, and Van Wolfswinkel's agent Louis Laros says it would be natural for Sir Alex Ferguson to be interested in his in-form client.

But - like Phelan - Laros refused to talk up a potential move to United as he stressed Van Wolfswinkel is enjoying life in Portugal.

"Ricky is very well in Sporting and very happy with the club, the city and the supporters," Laros said. "For him everything is perfect, for me not it is not a surprise this rumour but I have not spoken with anybody.

"It is normal the kid is linked with other clubs because people watch the Portuguese Liga and as always club scouts check on the best men and today Ricky is one of the best forwards."

Should United be genuinely interested in signing Van Wolfswinkel, it is likely they would first have to trim what has become a notable surplus of strikers - with the likes of Dimitar Berbatov, Michael Owen, Mame Biram Diouf and Federico Macheda all at risk of being moved out of the club.

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