Football

Pressure continues to mount on Van Gaal to deliver at United.

Holding onto Louis van Gaal allows Manchester United time to find his perfect successor

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Let’s face it, watching Manchester United at the moment is like pulling teeth - it’s an arduous task to actually sit down and watch a full 90 minutes in which the Red Devils feature.

The days of Sir Alex Ferguson's United side, once impregnable at home and just as tough to beat away, are sadly no more.

But calls for Louis van Gaal to leave his post at Old Trafford could spell bigger problems than disgruntled fans perhaps realise.

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LOUIS VAN DULL

Ok, so their style of play is far from what it used to be, but Van Gaal's men are still in the top five and just nine points behind league leaders Arsenal. It's not a complete disaster - yet.

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But with just one win in seven league games and recent defeats to Bournemouth, Norwich and Stoke, fans are entitled to feel a little aggrieved.

The biggest issue Van Gaal needs to address is the club's new-found defensive and negative style of play. When Wayne Rooney and company attack, they look sluggish, uninventive and unthreatening.

WHAT’S THE PROBLEM THEN?

United fans have experienced two decades worth of success like no other club in Europe has - the Red Devils dominated English football to the point where it seemed they could never be matched.

FBL-ENG-PR-MAN UTD-SWANSEA

Arsenal’s Invincibles, Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea and Manchester City’s riches all dented United’s superiority at one point, but under Ferguson, they always seemed to bounce back and reassert their dominance.

Since his departure in 2013, United have introduced two managers – David Moyes, who lasted less than a season, and now Louis van Gaal. Both have struggled to satisfy the fans.

DRAWBACKS OF DISMISSING THE DUTCHMAN

If United dismiss their 64-year-old manager, they put themselves in the danger of joining Chelsea and rivals City in the high turnover of managers.

Since Roman Abramovich took over at Stamford Bridge in 2003, the Blues have hired and fired Claudio Ranieri, Jose Mourinho (twice), Avram Grant, Luiz Felipe Scolari, Guus Hiddink (now in his second spell), Carlo Ancelotti, Andre Villas-Boas and Roberto di Matteo. 

Manchester United v Swansea City - Premier League

City have committed a similar act, appointing and dismissing Kevin Keegan, Stuart Pearce, Sven-Goran Eriksson, Mark Hughes and Roberto Mancini.

This sort of ‘chop and change’ attitude has invariably cost the pair at some point. Chelsea failed to win the Premier League in three straight seasons following their second title, whilst City's expected dominance was halted by both United and the Blues.

Former manager Moyes has publicly backed his successor, claiming: "They don't want to become a club which continuously changes their manager" - a sentiment I fully support.

FBL-ENG-PR-MAN UTD-CHELSEA

WHAT’S THE SOLUTION?

Van Gaal has just one season left on his contract at Old Trafford, at which point he'll retire from football altogether. If this is the case, why not stick with him and allow more time to find a suitable replacement, rather than opt for a quick fix?

It remains the case that there are few candidates that could succeed him on such short notice.

Mourinho is favourite, but United fans might be wary of his 'three-season syndrome' and defensive philosophies.

Manchester United FC v VfL Wolfsburg - UEFA Champions League

Pep Guardiola, on the other hand, is a choice those associated with the club would welcome, although it's believed he has decided to join rivals City upon his departure from Bayern Munich.

STICK OR TWIST?

United should stick with Van Gaal. Changing management every couple of seasons will not bring the 20-time league champions the stability they're crying out for, whilst waiting could yield the perfect successor.

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Topics:
Premier League
Football
Manchester United

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