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23rd Jun 2017

Sir Alex Ferguson was shocked by one particular piece of business from Louis van Gaal

In disbelief

Darragh Murphy

Manchester United supporters, for the most part, would prefer to forget all about Louis van Gaal’s tenure and act like it never happened.

The brand of football espoused by LVG was not what one would call thrilling and with just an FA Cup triumph to show from the Dutchman’s two seasons in charge at Old Trafford, he’s not remembered fondly by fans of the Red Devils.

Whilst entertaining in the dugout at times, Van Gaal made plenty of mistakes during his only spell in the Premier League.

And Sir Alex Ferguson was left stunned by one particular decision that Van Gaal made in the transfer market.

Van Gaal sold defender Jonny Evans to West Brom in 2015 and that decision left United’s greatest ever manager in absolute disbelief.

Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill recalled a conversation with Ferguson, in which he explained how he felt Evans could have stayed at United for many years to come.

“In September after last year’s Euros, there was a conference in France for the coaches and Sir Alex was there talking about it and he openly said to me that he could not believe Van Gaal had sold Jonny from United,” O’Neill is quoted as saying by the Belfast Telegraph. “Because having seen him come through, he felt Jonny would spend his whole career at United or certainly to the latter stages of his career.

“I think there were a lot of factors why he ended up at West Brom. In the previous two years he had an injury and at Manchester United they had Ferdinand and Vidic and then Jonny and there was a succession plan that didn’t happen because of the change in manager.

“At that time he was on the radar of other big clubs. I know that for a fact but they possibly had reservations about him because of the injuries he had and because he maybe hadn’t played as much in the previous 18 months. That was just unfortunate.”