Former Manchester United Louis Van Gaal has opened up on the problems he faced at Manchester United and exactly what is wrong at the club.
This is how the interview went.
“The problem begins with, of course, that Manchester United was never refreshed. I think when you are a manager you have to refresh every year to keep the team-building process going.”
“There is Woodward and his right hand is [head of corporate development] Matt Judge. Judge I met once in a while but not too much. And there was the head of scouting. That was the structure but you are always dependent on Woodward and Judge.”
“I thought always Manchester United can buy every player because they have a lot of power. Seemingly a few players were not reachable for Manchester United. I cannot understand but it was like that.”
“Woodward is the one who talks with the Glazers. I only talked with the Glazers when they were [attending] a game or training session. Mostly they attend top matches and fortunately we won a lot of these top matches, in any case against Liverpool.”
“I think you have to change the structure in the organisation of Manchester United because now I think the balance between the football department and commercial department is not right and even slopes over to the commercial.”
“What I have experienced is that I must go to the USA before the season and we have to play a lot of matches in a short time. That is a good commercial preparation but not the best for me as a football manager. Everybody was happy except me, because in the USA we won everything, but the first match in the league was a loss: Swansea. That is because every player was exhausted. When you have to start like that, that’s not good.”
“In scouting players, Manchester United don’t have the organisation to deliver the best players in my opinion. Then with the education of players, you cannot say that the education of Manchester United is very good. How many players are coming through?”
“With Manchester United, you have a fantastic performance department and that is under the guidance of the doctor. But this performance department needs also the guidance of an experienced technical director. You have to use that department not only for the first team but also intensively for the youth education. Then young players are more educated in the philosophy of Man United and the big step to the first team is much easier. These are the important aspects that you have to develop as a technical director.”
“I saw as Manchester United manager that the quality of the players of City, Tottenham, Chelsea, Arsenal was better. So what can I do? We were attacking. We were not defending and we were looking for tactical solutions adapted to the level of our players. For example we were provoking space and that was new in England. I think six months ago [Jürgen] Klopp has also seen the light because in former days he was always pressing.”