Stefan de Vrij has ended the speculation linking him to Manchester United after the defender confirmed he has no intention of leaving Lazio. The Dutch international was a rumoured target for the Red Devils since they appointed Louis van Gaal as their manager.
The 23-year-old played under the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss for the Netherlands in the 2014 Fifa World Cup. The centre-back was one of the star players for the Dutch side as they finished third in the tournament.
Van Gaal replaced David Moyes in the summer of 2014 and De Vrij has been linked even in the past, when he was with his former club Feyenoord. He joined Lazio last summer and has set his sights on winning silverware with the Italian outfit.
"I am continually being linked with Manchester United because Louis van Gaal is their manager," De Vrij told Il Messaggero, as quoted by Goal.com.
"A lot of Dutch players are being linked with Manchester United, but there was never anything in it. All I want at this stage is to win things with Lazio. Our start to the season was a bit difficult, but we are on our way up again. We are climbing in the table."
The Dutch manager currently has the services of Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, Daley Blind, Paddy McNair and Marcos Rojo in the centre-back position. Jonny Evans joined West Bromwich Albion, while Tyler Blackett was allowed to leave on loan. Despite this, Van Gaal decided against signing a central defender and moved his compatriot in the heart of the back four.
Ferdinand: I thought Ferguson never gave credit to me and Vidic
Meanwhile, former United defender Rio Ferdinand has admitted he felt he was not given enough credit by Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford. The centre-back duo were instrumental in the Red Devils' success during their time and they both left the Premier League giants as free agents after the 2013/14 season.
"I used to feel I was never given enough credit. Me and Vidic used to talk about it quite a lot," Ferdinand is quoted as saying by the Manchester Evening News.
"It wasn't until I retired he said 'your personality, if I had given you too much credit, you might have got carried away'. All the time I was trying to get that credibility from him. He did have that for me as a player."