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Louis Van Gaal accused of holding back young English talent development

Modified 03 Sep 2015, 20:47 IST
Sam Johnstone was recently given a taste of first-team football in Manchester United’s tour of the United States.

Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal has been highly criticized by the agent of goalkeeper Sam Johnstone for holding his client back and hampering talented English youth after the club refused to let him leave this summer, reports Goal. The Dutch coach has been accused of “holding back young English talent” by the agent.

Louis Van Gaal’s refusal to send out the young goalkeeper on loan was due to David De Gea’s links to Real Madrid, Anders Lindegaard’s move to West Brom this summer and ruling Victor Valdez out of contention for the number one spot at Old Trafford. Sam Johnstone was promoted to Van Gaal’s second choice – behind Argentine international Sergio Romero in the manager’s pecking order.

The 22-year old has featured for Manchester United’s games during their pre-season tour of the United States. However, his string of impressive performances for the Red Devils during the pre-season has been overlooked at the start of the new campaign which has prompted several clubs to take him on loan, with Johnstone showing interest in a move away.

Sam Johnstone’s agent, Jordan Segal has hit out at Van Gaal, who has been accused of holding back the young keeper’s development with no guarantee of providing him first-team football. The agent believes his client has no interest on warming the bench and playing in the reserves in this stage of his career.

"Sam just wants to play football but Manchester United are holding him back and not even playing him," said Segal.

“He is a young goalkeeper and it is time for him to play regularly. If that is not at Manchester United, then it has to be elsewhere. This is an example of young English talent being held back by Van Gaal. The start of the season was the perfect opportunity to give Sam his chance to prove he can play for United. He is ready.” he further added.

"If they do not want him to play then he needs to move for the sake of his career. He cannot sit on the bench or in the reserves. England should have as many goalkeepers as possible to pick from. Given the early progress in his career that is the level he is aiming for. He is not going to get there by not playing."

The young 22-year old keeper will be limited of first-team action due to the fact that he has got two international goalkeepers fighting for the number one spot at Old Trafford. David De Gea will be back in contention for a spot in the team after his long standing move to Real Madrid collapsed on transfer deadline day.

Published 03 Sep 2015, 20:24 IST
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