By Wayne Veysey

3rd Mar, 2016 | 8:25am

Van Gaal singles out surprise Manchester United star man in Watford win

By North-west correspondent Alex Stevens

Louis van Gaal has singled out Timothy Fosu-Mensah for his outstanding performance in Manchester United’s 1-0 win over Watford.

The 18-year-old defender impressed his manager after filling in at centre-back due to the injuries that have ravaged Van Gaal’s squad.

With the likes of Chris Smalling and Phil Jones injured, and Michael Carrick, who deputised at centre-back in the previous two games, rested, Fosu-Mensah was drafted in alongside Daley Blind for his full debut in Wednesday night’s Premier League clash at Old Trafford.

Van Gaal was impressed with how the teenager, who only made his debut as a second-half substitute against Arsenal last Sunday, coped with the power of Watford front pair Troy Deeny and Odion Ighalo.

“Timothy has saved us three times because of his speed. He wanted to come off in the second half, but I kept him on because he always closed the door for us,” Van Gaal explained at his post-match media conference. “When you get a yellow card after 20 minutes, as Timothy did, it is not so easy to play against Ighalo and Troy Deeney.”

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Young gun: Van Gaal paid tribute to Fosu-Mensah’s excellent full debut

The Dutch teenager has played in a variety of positions at the United youth level and Van Gaal is convinced the centre-back is not his best position despite his fine display against Watford.

“I think he’s a better full-back than a central defender. But at Ajax, he always played right centre midfield or right centre-half.”

In other Manchester United news, the club remain confident of Jose Mourinho becoming their next manager.