Monday 18 November 2019

That win was for the fans, insists Van Gaal

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal celebrates with Ander Herrera (left) after the final whistle
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal celebrates with Ander Herrera (left) after the final whistle

Louis van Gaal claimed that Manchester United supporters could once again "hold their heads up" in the city after a 4-2 win at Old Trafford ended a four-game losing sequence against Manchester City.

United consolidated third spot in the Premier League and moved four points ahead of Manuel Pellegrini's team by fighting back convincingly after Sergio Aguero had put the visitors ahead in the eighth minute.

With City having won two of the past three Premier League titles and having dominated this fixture recently, Van Gaal, the United manager, was delighted with a victory that restored local pride.

"You are playing for the fans and, at the start of the season, it was not fantastic to be a United man," Van Gaal said.

"We had 13 points from 11 matches and still they have supported us, so this week they can go on the streets, heads up and say, 'we are the better team'.

"Now the results are coming back, it's great to be a supporter of Manchester United."

Despite the boost of beating City, Van Gaal warned that United have much to do to secure Champions League qualification. They must still play the league leaders Chelsea and second-placed Arsenal.

"We are now four points ahead of City in third place, which is very important because it [third place] gets you automatic qualification into the Champions League," the Dutchman said.

"But we have still six matches to go and it can be changed again, so we are still in a rat race. We have to prepare a match against Chelsea away and we are not winning so many matches away, so that is a difficult game and City is playing at home [then], so the difference is maybe one point again.

"The key is the process. When the players understand what they are doing on the pitch then you can continue much more easy than before." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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