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Louis van Gaal wants Manchester United players to be 'horny' ahead of crucial Europa League tie

Van Gaal also gave updates on the injured players and their availability

Louis van Gaal Manchester United players horny
While most managers want to see desire from their players, Louis van Gaal has taken it one step further

Ahead of Manchester United’s crucial Round of 32 match against Midtjylland, Louis van Gaal said he wanted his players to be more ‘horny’ in an unusual press conference. The Red Devils trail 2-1 after a shocking loss in the first leg in Denmark and must overturn the deficit to qualify for the next round. 

Van Gaal has been under immense pressure this season, especially after United were eliminated from the Champions League in the group stages. The Europa League was seen as a trophy they could target as, in his words, it was one they had never won before.

But the loss against a side that was established only in 1999 – the year United won the treble – had seen fans turn on their manager and demanded that he get the sack. Reports of Jose Mourinho agreeing to take over at Old Trafford only fueled the speculation that Van Gaal’s days as United boss were numbered. The latest update also suggested that Mourinho had agreed a three-year contract.

Desire is a great word. I often use ‘horny’: Van Gaal

Speaking to the press on Wednesday ahead of the Europa League tie at Old Trafford tomorrow, the Dutch boss admitted there was pressure but said the players had to ignore it.

“There’s a lot of criticism, so it can influence players but they have to ignore it.”

“I think Midtjylland has a very good organisation – very detailed,” Van Gaal explained. “They play with diagonal pressing. I do that also with my team.

“Not many teams are doing that. And when I see the data of Midtjylland they have always won against English opponents.  We have to keep the ball better and we have to move the ball quicker. That’s always what we have to do.

When asked if his players needed to show the same desire as their opponents did last week, he said: “Desire – it is a great word. Also, 'hungry' and a lot of times I use the word 'horny' with my players.”

David De Gea ruled out of Europa League tie

Spanish goalkeeper David De Gea, who had injured himself in the warmup session prior to the first leg, will remain sidelined with a knee injury. Sergio Romero had stepped in and did a commendable job in spite of the two goals conceded.

The 3-0 FA Cup win over Shrewsbury Town had restored confidence in the squad but they also suffered a couple of injuries. Will Keane limped off forcing United to play with 10 men as they had used up all three substitutions and is a doubt for the game as is Cameron Borthwick-Jackson who was substituted at half-time. Chris Smalling is also a doubt after hitting his head on one of the digital advertising hoardings.

Other first team regulars such as Wayne Rooney, Matteo Darmian, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Marouane Fellaini are still out of contention for this game. Van Gaal will also be wary of the upcoming game against Arsenal in the Premier League on Sunday.

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