Why United should stick with Louis Van Gaal till the end of the season
What a torrid run of form in December. Most United fans thought it would be best to give Giggs the managerial role and once and for all give Louis van Gaal the boot. But unless it was mathematically impossible that United could not qualify for the Champions league the board would not have even looked at replacing one of the successful managers in the game.
When the search began for David Moyes’ successor it had many United fans wondering who would the board pick as they had messed up the previous appointment. The need for a strong character and determination had to be the most crucial attribute if United had to compete with the top teams in England as well as Europe.
Louis van Gaal's appointment excited fans all around the world because of him guiding the Netherlands to a third-place finish at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. The Robin van Persie celebration on the touchline and the demolition of Spain made people search about LVG more and more. They were curious as to what this man could offer.
The Dutch tactician’s so-called Philosophy made him infamous among his peers. His arrival at United signalled intent right from the word go. Van Gaal instructed his players to follow a strict routine so as to develop a habit. Purchasing players based on their availability was the only option he had as he didn't have enough time to scout players and get them.
The high profile transfer of Angel di Maria made United the powerhouse in the transfer market as they had shelled out a huge amount to buy him from Madrid. The loan deal for Radamel Falcao proved to be a sign of intent that United were not ready to bow down to the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City in the market.
The first season didn't go quite as well for the United faithful who thought they had a crack at the title until the Chelsea game in April, which was the first of three consecutive losses for the Red Devils. However, he did rectify the mistakes of the previous season (under David Moyes) where all the top teams had blown United both home and away.
The first real test came against Manchester City where they narrowly went down to a Sergio Aguero goal compounded by a red card to Chris Smalling, who we all know, has spearheaded United's defence along with David de Gea this season. United then defeated Liverpool 3-0 at Old Trafford, thanks to standout performances from DDG and Juan Mata.
LVG even made Manchester City look mediocre when they visited Old Trafford in March. Van Gaal's biggest strength has been finding a way to make top quality squads look bleak in front of them. The record which needs to be looked at is finding a way to stop teams from the bottom half as they are the ones who cause trouble because either they are fighting the relegation battle or just want to create an upset against the most successful team in England.
No doubt the philosophy of Van Gaal has improved United's defence considerably, they do look flat in front of goal and in terms of chances created. The Red Devils lie on the other end of the table in term of chances created with fans stressing the importance of playing free-flowing football which Van Gaal is not certain about.
The draw at Newcastle when United had completely given freedom to its wingers and Wayne Rooney made United score 3 but eventually concede 3 as well. United fans were distinctly pleased with the performance of the attackers but not with the defence.
In December, where it looked like United players had stopped playing for the manager as reported by various newspapers around Europe, there seemed to be a change of mindset and character when United played out a 0-0 draw against Chelsea where they had failed to take their chances.
But against Swansea, they scored two and were back among the goals. Van Gaal knew that giving a break to Wayne Rooney would freshen him up and get him ready for the games ahead. Up next was Liverpool where three points were absolutely vital for United to start gathering pace. And there was the captain giving the three points in front of travelling fans.
Van Gaal knew at some point of time Rooney would break his duck and the time couldn't come soon enough as the captain has now five goals in as many games. The faith and trust shown by the manager even in times of despair proved to be a masterstroke as United have started the new year in some style.
Well, if a manager has this record to show for, this is what a team needs.
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