By Urban Echo reporter
It is very easy to forget that Manchester United have never really done this before. Between and around the two long reigns of Matt Busby and Sir Alex Ferguson, there have mostly been low-profile appointments.
Amongst those low profile appointments came David Moyes. Unfortunately he was unable to recreate what Sir Alex Ferguson magically created over the years. So, United have now done, what they perhaps should have done a year ago and gone for the type of coach who can easily slot into a big club in a new country.
Louis Van Gaal has achieved many accolades before arriving at Old Trafford. He was previously successful with Barcelona and Bayern Munich, and as he proudly boasted at his Old Trafford unveiling, together with his time at Ajax, he now reckons he has worked at the number one club in each of the four strongest leagues in Europe. That is no mean feat!
Van Gaal began his career in England with the total respect from all of United’s big-name players and supporters, an advantage Moyes never enjoyed. And, unlike his predecessor, he is a big enough name in the game to attract new players of the highest calibre.
Curing Manchester United after Ferguson’s ‘golden era’ is going to take time and that is clearly evident after spending £150 million on new players in the summer. Whether the new additions will gel as a team in years to come is a different debate but one need patience and you need a man like Van Gaal whose self-confidence knows no limits.
United’s performances this season thus far have been sporadic and uncertain. Their defence seem bewildered by the movement of strikers, although, having seen both Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand exit in the summer, it was bound to be a season of adjustment at the back for United. The list of injuries have also not helped the cause. At the moment, their opponents seem to be unlucky not to get more out of games. This seems to be a familiar trend under Van Gaal, however, pinning the blame solely on him, seems unfair.
It isn’t his fault that the expensive signings were rushed into the team and expected to adapt immediately to each other. Or that United had failed to fill the void of authority in central midfield by the time he arrived and that, in the absence of the injured Michael Carrick. Using their star man Wayne Rooney as their only creative option is wearing a little thin with the pundits and the fans. It is also not his fault that Falcao has been a shadow of the predatory, prolific striker he once was or that Robin Van Persie is having another poor season. In saying that, Van Gaal has actually done a remarkable job of using his resources wisely and keeping United in the top four consistently.
Win, lose or draw, Manchester United boss Louis Van Gaal continues to exhibit the strong personality that makes him the right man to lead the Red Devils out of the dark era of David Moyes and emerge from the tall shadows cast by Sir Alex Ferguson. Despite playing mediocre football, United still remains alive in the FA Cup and sit comfortably in the Premier League.
Ultimately, Van Gaal is a boss in every sense of the word, and that is exactly the calibre of leader United require at the moment. If Van Gaal’s given the right time, support and some luck, Manchester United won’t be far off from climbing back to the summit of the Premier League.