Reports: Louis Van Gaal will remain in charge of Manchester United for now
Reports are arriving that under-pressure Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal will remain in charge of the club for now. But his position is not entirely secure as his job will be assessed on a match-by-match basis.
After United lost against Southampton 1-0 last week, Van Gaal had offered to resign. He went to Holland during the weekend to think about his future at Old Trafford.
His offer to resign was not accepted by United’s vice-chairman Ed Woodward. The Dutchman faced similar situations around December when United was going through their worst run in the club’s 138-year history.
It is understood, Van Gaal, had a discussion with the vice-chairman and he also took training on Tuesday, as he is to lead the team at Derby County. Yet things might not remain this way should United fail to find the net.
In that case, Van Gaal’s No.2 and club legend Ryan Giggs might be asked to take over. The Welshman will then be in charge for the fourth round tie at the iPro Stadium.
When Van Gaal was last in such a situation as he is now, United played against Chelsea on 28th December and that game redeemed the Dutchman’s position. The match was a stalemate but United played with a higher tempo than usual and the fans witnessed more attacking threat from United.
After the draw against Chelsea, the Red Devils were unbeaten for five consecutive matches but Van Gaal’s position has not really been safe. It is now under considerable threat as a defeat at Derby might result in his resignation or sacking. If not then, the next match in the league against Stoke City will be another test for Louis.
Lack of transparency?
The lack of transparency over the manager’s future is understood to be causing a lot of confusion among the players. The squad has struggled to imbibe his ‘philosophy’ but with the results, it is believed that his authority is diminishing.
The Premier League remains a top priority for the club owners. United find themselves fifth in the league with 37 points, five points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur. The home defeat against Southampton being the sixth league defeat this season, it adds up to 11 defeats in their 29 top-flight matches for the ongoing season.
It is also understood that Woodward is unwilling to let go of Van Gaal before summer as finding a permanent replacement might be difficult and there will be financial problems as well.
Jose Mourinho, though he seems a likely candidate, has been ignored so far as it appears that there is a divide within the United hierarchy with some in favour of him and some not. It has more to do with the nature of the Portuguese individual and not his coaching style.
Apart from Giggs some other candidates who might be considered to take charge of United should Van Gaal resign or be sacked are Gary Neville, Atlético Madrid’s Diego Simeone, Mauricio Pochettino, Marcelo Bielsa and Jorge Sampaoli.
In the wake of strong rumours linking Pep Guardiola to Manchester City, it appears that United are still in pursuit of the Spaniard and might just land him up at Old Trafford.