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Villa's Vlaar is again in the news for Manchester United link

Aston Villa defender Ron Vlaar is (still) apparently a transfer target for Manchester United. Whee?

Richard Heathcote

The Ron Vlaar to Manchester United rumours have been swirling constantly since the World Cup. To rehash the details: Vlaar was phenomenal in the tournament, Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal is now at Manchester United, Manchester United need defensive help et voila!, the two seem likely to pair up again. Frustratingly, this has always seemed to be a rumour of the "well, it makes sense" variety rather than "we have actual sources."

And for that reason I've always sort of taken it lightly. Aston Villa, unless they can get a great deal of money for Vlaar, have no real reason to sell. He's out of contract at the end of this year, and considering the way in which the defense has hemorrhaged goals lately, he has more value on the pitch than he would as the piece for a small transfer fee. Plus, keeping him gives the club the chance to re-sign their captain.

But the rumour persists, and it doesn't seem to be going away. The most recent example is the Guardian's rumour mill saying that "United aren't going to let this Falcao business stop them from trying to plug a defence hitherto neglected to the point of hilarity, and are making eyes at Aston Villa's Ron Vlaar." And I'm finally started buying into the seeming inevitability of it all. The thing has been so consistently reported by so many sources that maybe it doesn't even need a source now.

Plus you've got the added impact of the chance for Vlaar to get off of a club that is not so much a sinking ship as a breeding ground for future coral reefs at this point. Why wouldn't you leave Villa for Manchester United if you were given the chance. It may just be my dour attitude lately, but I'm giving this more credence than I ever have. I hope Paul Lambert has a defensive replacement in mind, though, because having Ciaran Clark as the first person off the bench in the defense is horrifying.