The German’s commanding, assured style of football has been met with rapturous adulation from supporters, especially after Man United’s 3-1 over Club Brugge where the 31-year-old made more passes in 45 minutes than any other player on the pitch.
When asked whether Schweinsteiger was ready to start, Van Gaal said: “Yes, of course. It’s a matter of time.
“Maybe it shall happen tomorrow. You never know. I think he can still do better because when you are not fit enough then it is difficult to show your highest level.
“But I think it’s also a matter of time and we have seen a solution in rotating our [second] captain, Michael Carrick, with Schweinsteiger. I think it’s a very good solution because we can spare them both for the big moments.”
Being able to rotate between two highly experienced holding midfielders is an valuable luxury for Van Gaal.
While Morgan Schneiderlin will more or less always occupy that no-nonsense, high energy tackling role on the right side of midfield, Carrick and Schweinsteiger will alternate between accompanying the Frenchman throughout the season.
Schweinsteiger’s display against Brugge could end up being the perfect prelude for the German’s first start in a United shirt tomorrow.