Sunday, 6 December 2015

Do or die Champions League tie is make or break for Louis van Gaal

It's fair to say that Louis van Gaal is proving a divisive figure with United fans- but should the unthinkable happen and we go out on Tuesday then the Dutch manager may be pushed beyond the point of no return.

Van Gaal has insisted that he retains the support of the majority of fans and his players- and that he will walk should the squad turn against himself- and it does seem a little exaggerated to turn on him with the side three points off top spot in the league.

However, Tuesday night's match in Wolfsburg in the Champions League is the most important match of the season both for us and for him... and should we fail to progress there will be serious questions asked.

In fact, I'd go so far as to say that Tuesday night's match is the biggest of LVG's time in charge of the club, so high are the stakes. 

He will not be sacked if we exit the Champions League at the group stage but it would undoubtedly be a massive blow given the massive effort and outlay to return to Europe's elite club competition.
Given the manager's glittering career and all his experience at the top level, should we not make it out of a tricky but hardly daunting group, then it will be a serious blot on his copybook and will only increase the pressure during an unconvincing run of patchy results. 
 

A trip to Wolfsburg is never easy and this match will give us the chance to either show how far the side have come and how marked the improvement has been under LVG, or to merely prove the doubters right in their criticism of the sometimes stubborn and staid tactics of the manager.

We have to throw off the shackles and go out to win in Wolfsburg and the fact that victory is a must could finally be the wake up call van Gaal needs to finally inject some urgency and energy into United.

The Reds have shown all-too-brief glimpses of the side I know we can be this season, but to seal qualification for the knockout stages would give everyone a lift as we approach the half-way point of the season.

Conversely, an unthinkable early exit would only add to the negative and maybe downward spiral swirling around the club at present and it would hard to see how the team - and Van Gaal - could recover. 

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