'Three months for United to adapt'

Van Gaal warns fans not 
to expect instant success

TAKING HIS CHANCE: Luke Shaw (left) impresses manager Louis van Gaal in United’s game against Inter.




  • Man United win 5-3 on penalties

New Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has set a three-month bedding-in period for his players to get used to his style and methods.

The Dutchman, brought in following the sacking of David Moyes less than 10 months after taking the job at Old Trafford, is introducing a new 3-4-1-2 formation and increasing the technical demands on his players.

United, who finished outside the European places in seventh last season, play Swansea City, Sunderland and Burnley in their first three Premier League matches but, despite a relatively comfortable start, van Gaal warned against immediate success.

"Every club where I have been, I have struggled for the first three months," van Gaal said, after the win over Inter Milan on penalties in Washington DC in the United States yesterday morning (Singapore time).

"After that, they know what I want, how I am as a human being and also as a manager because I am very direct.

"I say things as they are, so you have to adapt to that way of coaching. It's not so easy and also the way I train and coach is in the brains and not the legs.

"A lot of players are playing intuitively and I want them to think and know why they do something. That's a process that is difficult at first.

"When we survive for the first three months, it will be the same as at Bayern (Munich). After three months there, we were seventh (in the Bundesliga) and third in the Champions League (group stage).

"We had to win at Juventus, we did and that was the turning point."

Meanwhile, van Gaal was impressed with the performance of Luke Shaw, who played the second half of United's win over Inter despite going through a punishing training session on the morning of the match.

On the eve of the 5-3 penalty shootout win, van Gaal criticised Shaw for turning up for pre-season out of shape.

The United manager created a special individual training plan to get the player up to speed for the new season.

That plan included an intense fitness session on the morning of the International Champions Cup game in Washington DC.


Van Gaal had planned to bring Reece James on as a second-half substitute, but he introduced Shaw instead after the United youth product suffered an injury just before kick-off.

Despite a lack of preparation, Shaw performed well off the bench, much to van Gaal's happiness.

"I think he did very good tonight," van Gaal said of Shaw.

"He's working very hard. He was lucky today because I was going to play our friend Reece James but he was a little bit injured.

"And so I asked (Shaw), in spite of a very heavy training session this morning, (to play)."

The Dutchman hailed the win as the best of United's three-match tour but, despite an impressive showing from his backline, he admitted that he is looking to sign at least one defender before the transfer window closes.

"I am looking at the defenders we have first," van Gaal said.

"And when you see our three matches, we are doing well, I think, but it is right that we are looking for defenders because a lot of defenders have gone.

"We have to replace them, but I also like Michael Keane and Tyler Blackett." - Wire Services.