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11th Sep 2015

Van Gaal: Criticism? The fans shout my name!


Nooruddean Choudry

Louis van Gaal was in bullish mood ahead of Saturday’s early evening clash with Liverpool at Old Trafford.

Addressing suggestions that Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick had ‘confronted’ him about arduous training methods and his dictatorial style, Van Gaal claimed it was to aid his management.

“Rooney and Carrick came to me and said the dressing room is flat. They told me because they wanted to help me,” said the Dutchman. “I communicate not only with my captains, but they try to warn me.”

“I then went to my dressing room and discussed with my players and we discussed a lot of aspects – but not what some have written.

“I think I have a superb relationship with my players. Maybe you have to consider how many players are coming to the manager to say something.”

Van Gaal argued that senior players coming to him with issues was a sign of openness and trust.

“In my career as a manager, I didn’t have so many who come to say something about the atmosphere in the dressing room or the way we train, or something like that.

“But it is very positive that they are coming to you and that they trust you.”

He also addressed the accusation that the Manchester United fans had started to turn on the veteran coach. Predictably, Van Gaal wasn’t having any of it.

“But the fans are shouting every week ‘LOUIS VAN GAAL’S ARMY!’ They are very satisfied and the players are satisfied.

“Some players are coming to me to apologise about what has been said in the papers.

“I say always what I feel and how it is and I can say only that I have a very good relationship with my players, but it is logical now that only nine are left from the initial group.

“The others I have bought will not say I am a lousy manager.”

Say what you like about Van Gaal, but he certainly doesn’t lack confidence.