Football: Top four the target for van Gaal

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Louis van Gaal has set Manchester United an initial target of a top-four finish in this season’s Premier League.
United’s new manager is yet to deliver a competitive victory and suffered the indignity of a 4-0 defeat at League One MK Dons in Tuesday’s Capital One Cup tie.
Neither that setback, nor a return of just one Premier League point from two games, has dented the Dutchman’s confidence and he remains convinced he can bring a new era of domestic and European success to Old Trafford.
But ahead of Saturday’s trip to Burnley van Gaal has again stressed it will take time to rebuild United’s squad and successfully implement his methods.
He said: “Before September 1, I have given every player a reasonable chance – it would not have been good to come as a new manager and say ‘I want 11 new players’. The process needs time and we are building up a new team.
“I hope we shall succeed and that we are this year in the top four, because the Champions League suits a club like Manchester United.
“Then maybe the next step is to be champions and the next step after that is to be winner of the Champions League, but that needs time. A lot of clubs fight for many, many years and never succeed.”
Van Gaal reminded the press of the positive reports which accompanied United’s successful pre-season tour of the United States, where Roma, Real Madrid and Liverpool were all defeated.
He said: “I was a king in the United States, and now I am not a king any more? I am the same Louis van Gaal with the same record and the same philosophy, and I am very confident I shall succeed here.”

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