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Manchester United Manager Sir Alex Ferguson Targets Schalke Goalkeeper Manuel Neuer To Replace Edwin van der Sar

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has lined up Schalke’s German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer to replace current number one Edwin van der Sar.

The veteran Dutch goalkeeper celebrates his 40th birthday at the end of October and with Neuer being 24, it is believed Ferguson sees the German as the first-choice successor between the posts at Old Trafford.

However, a fee in the region of £10 million will be required if the United boss wants to obtain Neuer from his current employers, Bundesliga side Schalke, despite approaching the last year of his contract.

And the high valuation has deterred United from making a bid for the goalkeeper, who starred for Germany in the World Cup in South Africa and played a vital role in the controversial game against England in the last 32.

The goalkeeper was accused of helping to con the referee after Frank Lampard’s shot appeared to cross the line but was not given.

Nevertheless, Neuer has revealed his Champions League ambitions and concedes his hometown team, Schalke, are in danger of not delivering that goal.

"I am not comfortable with the current situation at Schalke," Neuer told Kicker.

"I hope we can turn the corner and get back on track. My contract runs until 2012 and I have always made it clear that I would play this season for Schalke."

Earlier this week, United’s goalkeeping coach Eric Steele also revealed Van der Sar has made plans to retire but the former Dutch stopper has refused to rule out changing his mind.

"I do not yet know whether I will stop or continue after this season," Van der Sar told sport-promotion.nl.

"Only in the course of this season will I think about it. For now I keep my focus on United."

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