Relieved Van Gaal ready for Euro redemption


SHREWSBURY. — Louis van Gaal insists Manchester United still have “a lot of chances” for success this season as they prepare to face FC Midtjylland in a make-or-break Europa League tie.

United extended their FA Cup run with a comfortable 3-0 win over Shrewsbury on Monday night to secure a tie against West Ham United in the quarter-finals.

And Van Gaal has now begun preparing his side for tomorrow’s crucial home game with Midtjylland as they try to overturn an embarrassing 2-1 deficit from the away leg in Denmark.

The United manager’s future remains uncertain despite the routine win against League One Shrewsbury, and Van Gaal admits tomorrow’s fixture at Old Trafford is a significant occasion.

“It is in my opinion a big game because it’s a chance to qualify for the Champions League next season (by winning the Europa League),” he said.

“But we have to win a lot of matches of course.

“It’s easily spoken about but doing it is different. But it is possible and then we’ll see.

“Still everything is possible, we’re still in three competitions, so we have to fight for a lot of chances I think.”

Van Gaal could have first-choice goalkeeper David De Gea fit to face Midtjylland after he suffered a knee injury in the warm-up for the first leg. And the Dutchman expects more injured players to return to action in the next few weeks.

He has captain Wayne Rooney sidelined for around six weeks with a knee problem while Matteo Darmian, Marouane Fellaini, Adnan Januzaj, Phil Jones, Ashley Young, Marcos Rojo, Antonio Valencia and Bastian Schweinsteiger are also missing.

“I think in March a lot of players are coming back and then we’ll have a full selection, and with our full selection we were first in the Premier League,” he said. Van Gaal was pleased with his team’s display at Shrewsbury after the dismal defeats against Sunderland and Midtjylland. “Everybody shall say it is against Shrewsbury Town and Manchester United has to win but we have seen very difficult results in the FA Cup,” he added.

“The top team is not always winning. I think the performance was very good, I said that already at half-time to my players. — AFP.

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