Former Manchester United skipper Wayne Rooney has stated that his old club made a mistake with the sack of Louis van Gaal. The ex-Dutch manager spent only two years at Old Trafford and was subsequently replaced with Jose Mourinho in 2016.
After succeeding David Moyes as the head coach of the Red Devils, Louis Van Gaal endured a somewhat tumultuous start in his first season. Having inherited a squad that finished eighth in Premier League in the previous season, the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss' side finished the 2014/2015 in fourth place.
In the season that followed, United finished one place outside the top four and ended up missing out on playing in the Champions League. Nevertheless, the club managed to win its first trophy under Louis van Gaal in the FA Cup. Two days after the triumph at Wembley, the ex-Netherlands' manager and the Dutch members of his staff were sacked.
In a new book about Van Gaal's coaching career, former Manchester United superstar Wayne Rooney has opined that the 13-time Premier League champions did more harm than good with the sack of Van Gaal. He cited that the club was on course to achieving greater things, but the process was derailed following the exit of his old boss.
"I was devastated when Louis was sacked," Rooney said in the book titled 'LVG – The Manager and the Total Person.' "For me, it was an absolute joy to work with him.
"We should have kept him for a third season. We would have been so much stronger.
"I felt things were improving, and players started to understand his vision. In those two years, I learned more than under any other manager.
"This is why I will be forever grateful to him. Not just for making me captain, but also for all the trust and belief he had in me.
"We didn't have the best team in the league anyway, but we could not afford to have 12 players injured.
"Our best XI was good enough to play in the top four, but once we got injuries, we got in trouble because we did not have the same quality in the squad as in the years before.
"At the time it was good for me because I had decided that I wanted to become a manager.
"And working with Louis in that way was priceless, in my opinion, because I could learn so much from him. I could not have wished for a better example."