Kevin Strootman
Louis van Gaal is an ardent admirer of Kevin Strootman.Reuters file

Manchester United representatives are reportedly set to travel to Italy this weekend, to watch Roma midfielder and long-time Red Devils target Kevin Strootman's much-awaited comeback from injury.

The Holland international has been linked with a move to Old Trafford for a couple of years now, and speculations got stronger this summer, after Louis van Gaal took over the reins at United.

Van Gaal is an ardent admirer of Strootman, and had built his Oranje squad for the 2014 World Cup around the 24-year-old, though the player was eventually ruled out of the tournament due to a cruciate ligament injury, which had kept him sidelined for around eight months now.

The manager was heavily dependent on Strootman; so much so that he even abandoned his 4-3-3 formation a few weeks before the start of the World Cup and deployed a 3-5-2 instead, to compensate for the loss of the influential midfielder.

However, with the Dutchman finally set to make his return from the treatment room this weekend, United's chances of completing a transfer for the player in January have been handed a boost, according to The Telegraph.

Meanwhile, the Daily Star claims that officials from Old Trafford will travel to Rome to watch Strootman play in a specially-arranged B team game this Sunday, as the midfielder continues his recovery.

Van Gaal had revealed during United's preseason tour of the United States that he would monitor the former PSV Eindhoven star's return from the long injury lay-off, before plotting an approach for him in January.

Strootman had also hinted that he is open to a move to Old Trafford and reunite with mentor van Gaal, when he left long-time agent Chiel Dekker to tie up with Kees Vos - the agent who made Robin van Persie's move from Arsenal to United in 2012 possible.

Roma are well aware of United's interest in the midfielder, and manager Rudi Garcia had stated a few months ago that would it take a "three digit figure" [€100m] to tempt the Giallorossi to sell the player.