Louis Van Gaal At The Last Chance Saloon?

Posted: December 28, 2015 in Football, Louis van Gaal, Managers, Manchester United, Opinion, Premier League
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(Louis isn’t too sure about the hangover cure given to him by Jose Mourinho!)

Rumour has it that, if Manchester United do not beat Chelsea, then Louis van Gaal will be fired. “Rumour,” of course, being a pseudonym of the press.

To put this into perspective. The team in sixth position in the Premier League is at home and need to beat the team in fifteenth position in the Premier League in order for the manager to keep his job. So if United win, van Gaal is suddenly brilliant and can stay in charge. If United lose, van Gaal is rubbish and has to do one.

What a totally ridiculous state of affairs! Is Ed Woodward trying to make it easy for van Gaal to stay, by picking a lowly placed team in a home game and telling him he has to beat that team? Or is he trying to make it easier to sack him by saying, “if you can’t beat them then there is no hope?”

I have never been a believer in heaping pressure on a manager by giving ultimatums. How can that help? Most managers will tell you they are not bothered by pressure and that they thrive on it. Well, they are and they don’t!

The pressure will be reflected in the team selection, the tactics and the general approach to the game.

It seemed that van Gaal was beginning to feel the pressure against Stoke because he had absolutely no answers to their going 2-0 in front. Indeed, if the game were still underway now, I doubt United would have scored and it is anybody’s guess how many Stoke would have!

If Ed Woodward and the board do not think van Gaal is the right man for the job any longer then get rid of him. It won’t cost quite as much as when Moyes went because Woodward was not stupid enough, this time anyway, to hand out a seven year contract.

It helps nobody when this pantomime starts of, “he’s got two games to save his job,” or, “he has to win the next game.” Are top flight managers nowadays really bothered by these headlines? I doubt it. They are bothered, from a professional pride point of view, by what the CEO, the owner or the board tell them in private, by what the players think and by what they hear from the terraces.

I have a feeling that van Gaal may go even if United beat Chelsea. He has hinted that he is quite capable of resigning and not waiting to be fired. Maybe it has all got a little too much for him.

He certainly enjoyed the job and the press conferences during the all too short period when he was winning. Unfortunately, like a lot of arrogant people, he is only good at giving out the stick, he is a brat when receiving it.

The way he would spin a resignation is by saying that it was on his terms, when he no longer felt he had anything to give to United. This should not be allowed to happen.

I don’t particularly dislike van Gaal but I don’t think he should be allowed an easy way out. He swept into Old Trafford with tales of how he would win the Premier League within three years and maybe even the Champion’s League. He was forever telling anybody who would listen how successful he had been at his other clubs. He conveniently forgot that he had never managed in the Premier League. A league far more competitive than any other with which he had been involved.

It would seem that, a little like Jose Mourinho, when his team starts to fail and the results are going against him, he doesn’t know what to do. This failing cost Mourinho his job at Chelsea. There is a strong probability that van Gaal will suffer the same fate.

One will return in the near future, the other will fly off into the sunset. Wouldn’t it be ironic if the one who is going to return, does so at Old Trafford as manager of Manchester United?

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