By North-west correspondent Alex Stevens

Louis van Gaal has admitted in his programme notes for Manchester United’s festive clash with Chelsea that there must be an immediate improvement following a dismal run of results.

The under-fire Dutchman is under growing scrutiny after a six-match winless run which has seen United crash out of the Champions League and slip out of the Premier League’s top four.

United travel to face Stoke City on Boxing Day, but Van Gaal still expects to be in charge for their home clash with Chelsea two days later, as his programme notes for the match at Old Trafford have already been penned.

“There’s no disguising the fact we’re in a very bad period,’ he wrote, according to the BBC. “Things must begin to improve immediately.

“We can turn this situation around. The best way to come out of this period and improve is for us all to stick together”

Van Gaal walked out of his weekly press conference on Wednesday after accusing the media of trying to undermine him in his position as United manager.

Rumours have been circulating all week that he could lose his job, with former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho now available and said to be willing to take the United hot seat if the opportunity arises.

United travel to the Britannia Stadium on Saturday and Van Gaal knows they are under pressure to get a result.