Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal is set to meet with Old Trafford chiefs in order to hold crunch talks which will decide the outcome of ongoing plans to play in a series of friendly games this season.
According to the Daily Express the Dutchman will convene with his superiors in the near future to discuss the pros and cons of United participating in a number of games devised with the sole intention of generating money for the club. With the Red Devils not having the opportunity to play in Europe this campaign there are a number of free weeks in their schedule, and their early exit from the Capital One Cup has only applied further pressure to this particular conundrum.
Van Gaal's stance
Van Gaal however remains wary of signing up to a series of fixtures that could potentially disrupt his squad, having already vented his frustrations at how long the pre-season tour of the U.S was. With United bosses planning on realising their money-making dream through playing friendlies around the world, there would most certainly be concerns over the toll it could take on the first-team, and Van Gaal will likely raise them as genuine issues.
The Dutchman is said to have been told by the board that he will have the final say on whether or not the plans are put into motion, though it remains to be seen whether or not there’s any sort of resistance should he take the view that the friendlies are not a sensible move.
As it stands it would appear that the board have handed complete control of first-team issues to Van Gaal, with the 63-year-old having the responsibility to oversee mass change in a bid to restore the club to its former glory. Over £150 million was spent this summer to ensure that United’s poor start is quickly corrected, and the likes of Angel di Maria and Radamel Falcao were purchased to sprinkle a smattering of star dust over the line-up.
The stuttering start
Despite their excellent pre-season United have started Van Gaal’s maiden campaign in an unconvincing fashion, having failed to win a single Premier League match so far. A 4-0 drubbing at the hands of MK Dons saw them exit the Capital One Cup at the first hurdle, and a 0-0 draw with newly-promoted Burnley meant that Di Maria was denied a perfect debut.
Next up is QPR at home following the international break, where Van Gaal will be praying that his side can get up and running with a victory. The United board may have their sights firmly set on generating profit, but the new manager has eyes only for the results on the pitch.