Van Gaal was brought to Old Trafford after he helped the Netherlands, his home country, win Bronze in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. While at Manchester United, the Dutch tactician helped the club to win one FA Cup but failed to qualify the club for the 2016-2017 UEFA Champions League season. The club finished below the top 4 like in the days of David Moyes who was handpicked to the club from Everton by the club’s legendary coach Alex Ferguson in 2013 when he was leaving the club.
The fans and the executives of Manchester United could not stomach the fact that Manchester United would not be at the Champions League again, hence Van Gaal was sacked in 2016 and was replaced by Jose Mourinho.
In his first season at the club, one of the first things the Dutch legendary coach did was to appoint Wayne Rooney as the captain of the club.
Van Gaal Was Better for Wayne Rooney Than Alex Ferguson
“I was devastated when Louis was sacked”, Wayne Rooney who left the club in 2017 told Sunday Mirror. “For me, it was an absolute joy to work with him. We should have kept him for a third season. We would have been so much stronger.
“I felt things were improving and players started to understand his vision. In those two years, I learned more than under any other manager.
“This is why I will be forever grateful to him. Not just for making me captain, but also for all the trust and belief he had in me.”
Since Rooney’s comments about Van Gaal went public, pundits have been debating whether the decision to sack the Dutch coach just after winning FA Cup for the club was a bad decision or not.
Rooney could be right when one takes a critical look at it. For instance, the reason for sacking the coach which was a poor run of games which often lead to failure to grab a Champions League spot is an almost every season tradition. Since Van Gaal left United, the club managed to secure a Champions League spot once under Jose Mourinho. That could be Rooney‘s excuse for asserting that Manchester United sacked the Dutch tactician too early.