Rob Dawson of the Manchester Evening News spoke to Off the Ball
The pressure is mounting on Louis van Gaal at Manchester United after the team were eliminated from the Champions League on Tuesday night by Wolfsburg.
Rob Dawson of the Manchester Evening News spoke to Off the Ball last night about what has become a testing period for van Gaal and his backroom team after numerous 0-0 results.
"The pressure has been growing for a couple of weeks now because United just haven't been scoring goals. Before (the Wolfsburg game) they had drawn five of the last nine games 0-0. It's not what United fans expect. What happened (in Germany) has just compounded the problem with van Gaal. United fans are prepared to sit through what they consider to be quite turgid football if the results are going their way... Once that has been removed, Van Gaal has left himself vulnerable to criticism and growing pressure. That's where we find ourselves today."
"Some odd decisions" involving attacking options has been one of van Gaal's main problems this season according to Dawson. "He signed Anthony Martial, who started very well and has tailed off a little bit. James Wilson has been loaned to Brighton. You leave yourself in a position where in the biggest game of the season where United needed a goal, van Gaal turns to his bench and can only throw on Michael Carrick and Nick Powell... The squad looks unbelievably thin, especially up front."
Dawson doesn't think that the fans are close to turning on van Gaal despite the results. "The match going fans are conscious that United dont boo managers and dont openly revolt inside the stadium, especially away from home. That hardcore 3,000 might be unhappy with the performances and about the style of football, but they wont openly revolt in the coming weeks."
He did ominously conclude by saying that "there is an growing sense of worry perhaps that van Gaal may not be the right man". Manchester United's next game is on Saturday evening away to Bournemouth.