Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal looks set to face a player revolt after another dismal season in charge.
Following the weekend’s drama at Old Trafford, where the final match of the season between United and Bournemouth was cancelled due to a suspect device being found in the ground, United now know that in order to secure Champions League football next season, they must beat Bournemouth by 19 goals.
With Manchester City securing a point against Swansea at the weekend, they have all but secured the fourth and final spot in Europe’s premier club football competition.
Having been set a target of Champions League qualification, Van Gaal is now, more than ever, facing into a tough summer, not only to attract top talent to the club during the transfer window but also to simply keep his job.
Jose Mourinho has long been waiting in the wings to take over and although there have been reports of other clubs approaching the Portuguese manager of late, many now assume that a deal with United is not far away.
Today, further pressure has been heaped on the beleaguered Van Gaal, as reports (via the Daily Mail) have emerged that United’s prized goalkeeper David de Gea has given an ultimatum to the club, saying that if Van Gaal remains on, he will look to leave.
De Gea, Manchester United’s Player Of The Year for the third successive season, was set to join Real Madrid last summer and it was only an issue with paperwork that prevented the Spain international’s move then.
Having signed a four-year contract extension with the Old Trafford club since, fans thought that the future of their star stopper was secure. Now with reports that De Gea has become disenchanted with life under Van Gaal, fans will be fearing the worst as rumours of Real Madrid’s interest in the 25-year-old have not gone away.
With only an FA Cup to play for this season and with the prospect of no Champions League football, De Gea might well be forgiven for wanting to leave United if the failed regime of Van Gaal is set to continue for a third season.
Fans will be horrified by this latest development and will surely be urging executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward to finally sack the Dutchman and prevent any player unrest from developing further.
Failure to do that now would see the club disintegrate into a mere shadow of its former great self.
Gary Brennan, Pundit Arena
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