herald

Sunday 4 December 2016

Van Gaal: Blame me

Dutchman tells fans to support his players and direct criticism over poor performance at him

Louis van Gaal
Louis van Gaal

Louis van Gaal has called on disgruntled style conscious Manchester United fans to vent their anger on him and leave the players to play.

Criticism of van Gaal's approach has been growing in recent weeks with fans complaining that the Dutchman is not being true to the traditions of Old Trafford.

But van Gaal believes that negativity in the stands feeds into his team's performance and would prefer if fans directed their anger towards him.

"I can only advise the fans to criticise the manager and not the players," he said.

"I can cope with it. I have had a lot of experience in my life as a manager."

Ironically, van Gaal reckons that a bad atmosphere at Old Trafford can only stifle the very creativity that the fans are demanding from his team.

"It's very difficult to play for Manchester United with a lot of pressure and you can taste that in Old Trafford because of all the yelling, then it's not good for my players," he said.

Van Gaal has gone out of his way to praise supporters since the day he arrived and while he was careful not to alienate them on this occasion too, he underlined the fact that their are two teams involved on match days.

"Criticism (from) the fans is never unfair, and you cannot criticise the feeling of the fans. I think we have to play for the fans," he said.

"But the fans has to understand also the game and the resistance of our opponent. And also they have to analyse that," said the Dutchman.

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