Manchester United striker Robin van Persie is unlikely to be fit for tomorrow's Premier League clash against Queens Park Rangers, owing to the minor injury he picked up during last Sunday's surprise defeat against Southampton.
Red Devils boss Louis van Gaal intimated in Friday's pre-match press conference that the Netherlands international will probably not be risked for the Loftus Road encounter with Harry Redknapp's relegation-threatened Rs side.
Van Persie limped out of last weekend's 1-0 loss against Saints at Old Trafford around the hour mark and was later unable to travel to Switzerland for the FIFA Ballon d'Or awards ceremony in Zurich.
The 31-year-old was nominated on a three-person shortlist for the prestigious 2014 Puskas award after his sensational diving header in the emphatic 5-1 victory over Spain at last summer's World Cup in Brazil.
He eventually lost out to Real Madrid forward James Rodriguez, who claimed the prize courtesy of his strike for Colombia against Uruguay in the quarter-finals of the same competition.
Van Persie's anticipated absence could pave way for Radamel Falcao to return to the matchday squad after he was omitted entirely from the 18-man list last weekend. Van Gaal opted instead to name academy graduate James Wilson and three centre-backs in Tyler Blackett, Paddy McNair and Jonny Evans on the substitutes' bench ahead of the AS Monaco loanee.
The decision prompted fresh speculation about the South American marksman's long-term future at the Theatre of Dreams, with suggestions that the Dutch coach has given up on the 28-year-old - who is on a temporary deal until the end of the season - after a disappointing start to his Premier League career.
Ahead of tomorrow's match Van Gaal made clear he is not underestimating the challenge that QPR will present, despite their lowly league position, and suggested that every opponent raises their game when facing a club as big as Manchester United.
After dropping down to fourth place in the table the 63-year-old also spoke positively about his side's Champions League qualification credentials this term, and called on his players to bounce back from their recent defeat and start rebuilding the momentum that's needed between now and the end of the campaign.
Check out a snippet from Louis van Gaal's pre-QPR press conference in the video above, and leave a prediction in the comment box provided how you think Manchester United will get on without Van Persie - who has come into criticism from some sections of the Red Devils' vociferous supporters, following a series of under-par performances this term.
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