Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson is set to step up his interest in Palermo defender Simon Kjaer - also wanted by Liverpool, Chelsea and Real Madrid - according to reports. Patrice Evra was the only first-team defender fit to face Wolfsburg in the Champions League on Tuesday, with Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand, Jonny Evans, Wes Brown, John O'Shea, Gary Neville, Fabio and Rafael da Silva all sidelined. And as a result, the Scot may be forced to move for the 6ft 3in Danish central defender ahead of fellow interested parties Inter Milan, Juventus and Bayern Munich. Having impressed for Danish side FC Midtjylland, Kjaer’s move to Serie A side Palermo last season has proved to be just as successful, with the centre-back receiving rave reviews in the Italian press.
13th-placed Palermo may now struggle to hold on to their prize asset, believed to have an £11 million release clause in his contract. And Kjaer revealed earlier in the summer that he would not think twice about the possibility of joining the Red Devils, despite being a Liverpool fan. “If United just had two defenders whilst Liverpool had three I would choose United without hesitation," he said. “It does not help to choose with the heart in that kind of situation. I am a professional." However, former Middlesbrough striker Mikkel Beck - now Kjaer's agent - has admitted that Sir Alex may have to wait until the summer to sign the 20-year-old. “A clause in his contract will allow him to move during a set period in the summer,” he said. NEWS: Campbell linked with United move