Louis van Gaal defends Ed Woodward after criticism over Pedro and Nicolas Otamendi moves

by Leo Nieboer

Louis van Gaal has defended chairman Ed Woodward after criticism was aimed towards him following an active week in terms of Manchester United transfer targets.

Man United fans were dismayed by the club’s failure to bring in Barcelona’s Pedro, who signed for Chelsea instead, and directed their anger towards Woodward for seemingly refusing to meet the Spaniard’s release clause.

Woodward, who was revered by United fans after signing Matteo Darmian, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Morgan Schneiderlin in quick succession back in July, has also been maligned for letting Nicholas Otamendi move to Manchester City.

In his press conference, Van Gaal angrily defended United’s chairman.

“I have the idea you want to separate Ed Woodward with me. Never. Never,” said Van Gaal.

“Because every day I am updated by him and I trust him.

“I don’t think they (the critics) have to doubt Ed Woodward because he has proven already for many, many years he is the right person on the right spot.”

United fans are understandably exasperated by the fact that Woodward’s trip to Spain ended in two of United’s biggest targets moving to City and Chelsea.

However, Woodward’s involvement in this recent debacle may be somewhat overstated. Van Gaal insisted he dropped interest in Pedro rather than being snubbed by the Spaniard and as for Otamendi, the official line from the club consistently said they were never actually interested in signing the Argentine.

Regardless, United supporters will be somewhat concerned at United’s lack of progress in the latter stages of this summer and will be eager to see glaring holes in the squad fixed before the transfer window closes, notably at centre-back and up front.

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