Though Manchester United suffered a shocking 2-1 setback against Danish side Midtjylland in the first leg of their Europa League Round of 32 tie, manager Louis van Gaal believes that his team can bounce back in the second leg at Old Trafford.
Manchester United’s poor domestic form carried over into the Europa League, with the Red Devils following up their 2-1 defeat against Sunderland with a defeat against FC Midtjylland on Thursday.
In the post-match press conference, Louis van Gaal is quoted by the official club website as saying, “After 10 or 15 minutes we controlled the match, we scored a goal but we also gave a goal away. One minute before half-time and that is a difficult time to concede a goal.
“In the second half I have to say that Midtjylland were winning every ball and that was very disappointing because you know in advance that this is the key to this game. But still we have a chance to go through in the tie I think.”
With their chances of finishing in the top four looking bleak, the Europa League is arguably Manchester United’s best chance for Champion League football next season. As such, progression from this tie is absolutely crucial.
Michael Carrick not pleased by Manchester United display in the second half
In Wayne Rooney’s absence, Michael Carrick was the captain of the Manchester United side that travelled to Midtjylland.
In a post-match interview, the club website quoted the Englishman as saying, “I thought the first half was alright, we were pretty much in control but the second half wasn’t the same, we didn’t have the same intensity or tempo and in general it wasn’t good enough. You can use any excuse but at the end, of the day we weren’t good enough.”
Carrick had an opportunity in the final minutes to bring home a draw but was unable to find the target with a headed effort.
Manchester United’s injury list seems to be growing with every fixture
With David de Gea reportedly suffering a knee injury before kick-off, Van Gaal was forced to field Sergio Romero between the sticks in the first leg tie.
Commenting on De Gea’s injury before the match, Louis Van Gaal said (via Sky Sports), “It happened in the warm up. We have to wait and see for the scan tomorrow, then maybe we can say more but it was a big surprise.
“I think it is the law of Murphy when you have a list of 13 injured players and a few minutes before the game we can add another player to the list. Then it is difficult to cope with such a list of injured players.”
With thirteen players — including Luke Shaw, Marcos Rojo, Wayne Rooney and now David De Gea, among others — sidelined due to injuries, Louis van Gaal has a lot to worry about in the coming weeks.