Manchester United return hinted at by Van Nistelrooy

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Ruud Van Nistelrooy is virtually guaranteed to leave Hamburg on a free transfer in the summer and with the Dutchman already indicating that he would have no problems returning to England, Sir Alex Ferguson could do worse than re-sign their former striker.

Van Nistelrooy scored 150 goals in all competitions in a five-year-spell at Old Trafford, helping Manchester United win the Premier League, FA Cup and Carling Cup during this time.

He has since gone on to play for Real Madrid and Hamburg and has appeared regularly for the German side over the course of the current campaign.

However, his contract expires in the summer and with the Dutchman turning 35 in July, he is looking for a new club.

A host of top European sides are reportedly interested in doing a deal with Van Nistelrooy, as despite his age, he still possesses the predatory instincts in front of goal that are much admired.

Lazio and Napoli are believed to be among the clubs interested in Italy, while a return to PSV Eindhoven is not out of the question.

In the Premier League, Blackburn and Newcastle have previously been linked with an offer, but reading between the lines of some of Van Nistelrooy’s comments, there is a case to be made that he may return to Manchester United.

He said: “I am thinking about a nice club in England after this season.

“I have decided that if a really big European club does approach me, I will accept a role as reserve striker.”

There is arguably space in the Manchester United squad for Van Nistelrooy as fourth choice striker behind Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez and Dimitar Berbatov.

This would especially be the case if Michael Owen leaves Old Trafford in the summer, while Danny Welbeck, Mame Biram Diouf and Federico Macheda could well move on upon the ending of their current loan deals.

A £20 stake on Manchester United beating West Ham 1-0 in their next Premier League game would return £120. New customers can sign up here to take advantage of free bets totalling up to £60.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.