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louis: i had depay the price

GRUMPY Louis van Gaal has welcomed Memphis Depay to Old Trafford but moaned about the fact that he was forced to sign him or lose him to PSG.

Tagging Depay as a player in the Lionel Messi mould, van Gaal was pleased to get his man with an eleventh hour phone call but unhappy that his focus on the Premier League run-in has been upset.

"He's a goalscoring winger and there aren't so many of them in the world. Messi is one of those but now I think we have to talk about the game against Crystal Palace and we have to focus on this and the coming three games.

"I have been forced to sign him," said Van Gaal. "I didn't want to sign him before the end of the season because when you sign a player, you disturb the focus of your present group of players.

"The coming matches are very important for Manchester United and all of the players. But because of the market I must act, because otherwise he would have signed for PSG.

"That is why I signed Memphis Depay, but we have to speak about Crystal Palace now and not Memphis Depay, or David De Gea or something like that."

Van Gaal admitted that he was not thinking about Depay at all until word reached him that PSG had made a huge salary offer.

"At that time, he was not reached by me. That is because I didn't want to speak with him until the season had ended."