Louis van Gaal targets quicker Manchester United wide men next year
By Coral Barry
Louis Van Gaal has warned matchwinners Jesse Lingard and Juan Mata that they are too slow and that he will buy quicker wingers next year.
Mata and Lingard manned the flanks and delivered a goal apiece during United’s 2-0 win against West Brom at the weekend.
Lingard, 22, continued the fine impression he has made after graduating to the first team while Mata has started all 12 of the club’s Premier League matches this season on the right wing.
But Van Gaal has issued a warning to both goalscorers that pace is the priority.
“I have said already, in my first year many times, we need speed and creativity on the wings,” explained the Dutchman.
“You have seen that now we play with Jesse Lingard, and he is not the most speedy winger in the world. Mata is also not the most speedy winger in the world.
“So first we must address that problem and then we can see how we have to play and how we are in balance with playing with speedy wingers.”
United’s other wide options include pacier duo Anthony Martial and Memphis Depay, while Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young also have considerable experience on the flanks.
Van Gaal has already stated that he will sanction transfer overhauls every summer as United coach and the fast-approaching January window provides the opportunity to tweak his squad.
“I want to buy a lot of players, but not all of the players I want are for sale. So there are a lot of factors in it.”