Manchester United are widely expected to sign Kevin Strootman this morning or tomorrow at the very latest. And it looks like they have found a player with some common sense as he refused to comment on a potential move while representing Holland Under-21s.
Betting on the PSV Eindhoven youngster moving to Old Trafford was suspended by some bookies more than a week ago (although you could probably still have a punt at betting.betfair.com if you are a fan of backing dead certs), which suggested the market were already certain that he will make the move.
Reports that Manchester United’s chief scout Jim Lawlor was in the crowd to run his eye over Strootman one last time during Holland’s European Under 21 Championship victory over Russia are likely to narrow the odds even further.
The deal is widely thought to be already done, so Lawlor was probably just compiling one final report for new United manager David Moyes ahead of Strootman linking up with the champions or making sure they weren’t any glaring flaws in the player’s game that he had somehow missed up to that point.
But after the match, Strootman was tight-lipped about the potential move. He appeared less than impressed at being accosted by our pals at 101GreatGoals in the Mixed Zone after the match.
He does give a little smirk after initially being asked about the move, which might have been a diplomatic indication that he does expect to move to Old Trafford.
When he is pressed on the issue, his mood shifts a little and it is clear that he is not happy about being put on the spot.
All-in-all, Jim Lawlor can add a little footnote to his report to say that Strootman is already pretty much on top of his media training, so the club won’t have to start from scratch after his transfer.