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Transfer Rumours

Fletcher departure imminent

Manchester-United-v-Crystal-Palace-Premier-LeagueDarren Fletcher has been given permission to talk to West Ham United ahead of a possible January move, Louis Van Gaal confirmed at Friday’s press conference.

Fletcher, who is out of contract at the end of the season, has been linked with a move away from Old Trafford this month, with Valencia, West Brom and West Ham linked with a move for the Scotsman.

Earlier in the week, news emerged that United had granted Fletcher, who is the club’s current longest-serving player having made his debut in 2003, a free transfer, meaning they will not seek compensation should he leave before his contract expires.

“He is now at West Ham, I believe, so we have to wait and see,” Van Gaal said.

“He is my third captain so he is an important guy in the dressing room. I like him as a person and as a human being so we shall miss him. But he hasn’t played so many times and that is always the main goal of a player. We have talked about that and he preferred to play.

“Therefore, we have helped him to go away. It is a loss and, for the club that buys him, he is another player with a lot of quality – as a midfielder, but also as a captain and a very experienced player. We also have another experienced player in the same role, so that is the problem here.”