Manchester United players celebrate Christmas with party

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Louis van Gaal has a reputation as a somewhat dictatorial manager but he was willing to get into the Christmas spirit by allowing his Manchester United players to have their traditional Christmas party.

There is certainly reason to be cheerful at Old Trafford with the festive season upon us and four consecutive victories under the belt of Van Gaal - a record that has propelled his team into the Premier League’s coveted top four.

Following victory over Stoke City on Tuesday evening, with goals from Marouane Fellaini and Juan Mata enough to seal the three points, Van Gaal joined his charges 24 hours later as they dined at The Place for their yearly celebration.

It seemed a far cry from raucous Christmas parties of old where pints were sunk and punches were thrown, with shirts and blazers the order of the evening for what appeared to be a civilised meal with the boss in attendance.

Ryan Giggs also attended, this time as a coach rather than a player, and would have taken a far more reserved role than in his heyday, leaving any potential hijinks and pranks to those now under his command.

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Robin van Persie was at the forefront of the hilarity, which is a very generous description, as he wore an afro wig in tribute to Fellaini, who has been one of the shining lights of the Van Gaal era so far.

The wigged Dutchman shared a photo on Instagram of himself sat near to real-life afro merchant Fellaini, and it would seem that this is as debauched as the evening got.

WAGs were allowed to attend the event, which is perhaps the reason behind this restrained behaviour, with both Sam Cooke - girlfriend of Chris Smalling - and Lorelei Taron, pregnant parter of Radamel Falcao, sharing pictures of the night.

Stacey Giggs was also there with husband Ryan but seemed to have a glass of plonk too many as she was photographed falling asleep on the lap of her other half on the taxi ride home.

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Robin Van Persie
Manchester United
Premier League

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