Expect Louis van Gaal to learn from this season and lead Manchester United to a title challenge next year, says Dwight Yorke.
The former United striker told talkSPORT that while Van Gaal will be happy with securing Champions League football this time, he will look to go one better next campaign.
Yorke, who scored 48 goals in 96 appearances for the Red Devils, believes the Dutchman’s first year in English football will prepare him with all he needs to recapture the Premier League title for the first time since Sir Alex Ferguson left in 2013.
“He [Van Gaal] will have a bit of pride for getting fourth place,” Yorke said. “But he knows it’s not good enough for a Manchester United team.
“Next season, I expect this team to be far closer in the Premier League and certainly be in the Champions League spots.
“Had they not made Champions League this year, it would have been a very difficult season for them,” he admitted. “But I think his objective was to get into the Champions League.
“I’m sure in the back of his mind he thought that they would have been a lot closer to the likes of Chelsea, but there’s still a gap there.
“It would have been a learning curve for him. I know he’s been at big clubs, like Barcelona and Bayern Munich, but he would not have experienced anything like the relentlessness of the Premier League.”
SLOWLY BUT SURELY
Van Gaal’s side are 15 points behind champions Chelsea with only Sunday’s fixtures left to play. And, while it is not the usual trophy-hauling season Red Devils fans have become accustomed to, it is still an improvement on last year’s seventh place finish, which left them out of even the Europa League spots.
United are likely to spend big again in this summer’s transfer market to give their Dutch manager every weapon he needs to take back the league title from Chelsea. Jose Mourinho’s side, as well as Arsenal and Manchester City, are hardly lacking in firepower themselves though.
Can Louis van Gaal guide Manchester United to the Premier League title next season? Give your predictions in the comment box below!