Xabi Alonso
Xabi AlonsoReuters

Manchester United are reportedly preparing a shock move for Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso.

According to the Express, the Red Devils are set to move for the Spanish midfielder as an alternative for primary midfield target Arturo Vidal.

Louis van Gaal is desperate to strengthen his midfield before the end of the summer transfer window and has been linked with various midfielders, and Arturo Vidal and Kevin Strootman are his primary targets.

However, moves for both the players have stalled in recent weeks, especially for the former, after various reports suggested that the Chilean was closing in on a move to Old Trafford.

It was claimed that Real were unhappy at Alonso for losing a significant amount of weight over the summer and had concerns over his long-term fitness.

Following the arrivals of James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos, the Spanish capital club have a plethora of midfielders at their disposal and the report claims that, they are now willing to let the former Liverpool player leave in order to make place for the new signings.

However, this move could land a major blow to Arsenal and Chelsea's plans of signing Sami Khedira from the reigning European champions.

Rumours suggested that the German international was poised to leave the Spanish capital club after being snubbed by manager Carlo Ancelotti for both UEFA Super Cup game and the Super Copa against Atletico Madrid.

But if Alonso were to leave the club, it is highly unlikely that the manager will allow another of his midfielders to depart.

The 32-year-old Spain international is still valued at Real after he was offered a new two-year contract earlier this year, keeping him at the club till 2016.