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Will Van Gaal make Van Persie his new Manchester United captain?

Times are changing at Manchester United. With only a third-place consolation game against Brazil left to play, Louis van Gaal will soon begin his new role as the club's manager in earnest and, with Nemanja Vidic having departed for Inter, he will be tasked with appointing a replacement captain.

United certainly aren't short of candidates to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Sir Bobby Charlton, Bryan Robson, Eric Cantona and Roy Keane in having captained one of the biggest and most successful club sides in world football.

Wayne Rooney, who has been at Old Trafford for almost a decade now since his big-money switch from Everton, will undoubtedly be one option - the armband could work as a catalyst to bring out his best form.

The England striker has had his ups and downs over recent years with the Red Devils but all indications are he will remain a key part of the club's plans going forward - and he was front and centre for the launch of United's new kit, sponsored by Chevrolet, this week.

Patrice Evra, vice-captain under former management, is set to leave the club, meaning the likes of Michael Carrick and Darren Fletcher could also come into contention.

But Robin van Persie is arguably the stand-out favourite and could be the man Van Gaal turns to.

The former Arsenal striker, who held the armband during his final season at Emirates Stadium, is Van Gaal's skipper at the World Cup, where the Dutch have been one of the most impressive teams at the tournament.

As United's marquee striker, the star of the show alongside Rooney, Van Persie commands respect amongst his team-mates and he is sort the player who thrives on responsibility and being his side's main go-to man.

After a difficult season that saw him struggle to hit the heights of his debut campaign at Old Trafford, where he led United to the title with 26 league goals, one would expect Van Persie will be more determined than ever to make his mark in 2014-15 and especially when you consider his special relationship with Van Gaal.

The United man holds the 62-year-old former Bayern boss in extremely high regard and the pair share a similar mutual resepect to that of Van Persie and the man who brought him to Manchester, Sir Alex Ferguson.

And you only need to look at the striker's celebrations at the World Cup to see just how the close the duo are, with Van Persie darting straight to the touchline to high-five his national team boss after scoring that spectacular headed goal in the 5-1 thumping of Spain.

So while the likes of Rooney, Carrick, Evra and Fletcher all have legitimate claims to get the armband, Van Persie seems the obvious choice.

Is he adored by the fans? Yes. Is he respected by his team-mates and will he lead from the front? Without doubt. Does he have a good relationship with the manager? Most certainly.

Van Persie ticks all the boxes. Over to you, Mr Van Gaal.

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