Monday 21 December 2015

LVG has done good work despite recent slump

We've been a little harsh on Louis van Gaal in these pages recently- rightly or wrongly, but we think it's only fair we look at the good things the Dutchman has done for us.

Appointed as United boss in May 2014 with the club at a low ebb having finished seventh thep previous season under David Moyes, Van Gaal inherited a broken, ageing squad in desperate need of an overhaul. 

Given a remit of taking the club back into the Champions League, this may have seemed like a straightforward target for Van Gaal considering the considerable resources at his disposal.

Even so, he deserves credit for bedding in a new side and qualifying for Europe comfortably- steering the United ship back into steady waters after the turbulent sea of the previous campaign.

Despite the vast outlay in building a new team, Van Gaal also should be credited for his sterling work with the United youth.

A vital and indelible part of the club's history, LVG has carried on the tradition by giving nine Academy players their debuts in his time in charge and- while only Jesse Lingard has really become a regular- the future looks bright for the next crop of Reds youngsters. 

Even despite recent turmoil and mounting pressure- United's current position isn't as bad as it may seem.
We are fifth yes, but sit only four points off of Arsenal ahead of Monday night's second versus third showdown as the Gunners take on City at the Emirates.

As well as stabilising the club, improving facilities at Carrington and promoting youth, Van Gaal has of course also vastly improved United's defensive solidity.
A back four that was leaking too many goals last season are now well drilled, well organised and supremely marshalled by Chris Smalling, who has grown and blossomed under the influence of the Dutchman.

Ashley Young and Marouane Fellaini have also improved under Van Gaal's tutelage and, as much anything else, we've also beaten Liverpool three times in a row (surely that's as good as anything else). 

All this may seem irrelevant in light of recent events- but it's this that has seemingly bought him time as- despite the speculation since Saturday- Van Gaal's job would appear safe, at least for now.

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