Manchester United Fans: Calm Down About Van Gaal
Louis van Gaal, the new manger of Manchester United as I’m sure everyone on the planet knows by now, has recently claimed that his squad is ‘broken'. This is in relation to how unbalanced it is, with him claiming that there are currently too many attacking players, with Mata, van Persie, Rooney, Welbeck, Herrera, Hernandez and debatably Fellaini all preferring to play in forward positions. He did not even mention Kagawa, perhaps a telling sign that his Manchester United career may be coming to an end. This is the latest in astring of moves that have been welcomed by Manchester United fans.
Van Gaal has certainly tried to make an impression so far at United, telling Luke Shaw he is unfit and making him train alone, creating a similar situation with Wilfried Zaha, and moaning about their pre-season plans as apparently they are too commercially driven. All this and more has led to most of the media being amazed by him and pointing out how much better than David Moyes he most certainly must be. However, let’s not forget those heady days after a 4-1 win against Swansea in Moyes’ first game when there was also a media storm welcoming the all-conquering ‘chosen one’ fresh from a trophy-less 11 years at Everton. It is obviously far too early to judge Van Gaal until after at least 5-6 games, and although a 7-0 win against L.A. Galaxy is all well and good, it does not a Fergie make.
Indeed, when looking at what has happened so far, Van Gaal has not done anything hugely out of the ordinary so far. His two signings, Herrera and Shaw, were planned long ago by the United hierarchy. Making certain players train more during pre-season is not revolutionary. Some will always come back from their holidays with a few more pounds on than the others. Also, this time last year David Moyes was being warned how training them too much could hurt his precious talented players. He did play a system with three at the back, but it’s hardly unusual for new managers to play different formations to their predecessors, especially when those predecessors led a team from 1st to 7th. What was being used before obviously had to be changed, otherwise he would never have even been hired by the club. Hailing him as a genius does seem to be a bit preemptive.
This talk of having a ‘broken’ squad just seems to be the preamble to a few major sells, and also a bit of a dig at the man before him, David Moyes. Players such as Marouane Fellaini, Shinji Kagawa, and maybe even Javier Hernandez or Danny Welbeck could well be on their way so that the squad can be rebalanced. It also could be a sign that some more defensive players are on the way in, with several being linked to the club. So overall, the media hype is a bit over the top, Van Gaal has done nothing amazing…yet.