Herrera says it would be "unfair" for Man Utd to sack Van Gaal

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Van Gaal gets backing from one of his star names
Van Gaal gets backing from one of his star names

Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera has backed his manager Louis van Gaal to defy his critics and challenge for trophies in the next few months.

Van Gaal has been under fire for most of this season and is widely expected to lose his job at some point in 2016, with Jose Mourinho strongly tipped to take over.

Yet one of the players who have struggled to establish himself in Van Gaal's side has claimed the Dutchman deserves to be given time to bring success to the club.

"I think it would be unfair to sack him," said Herrera in an interview with Marca.

"The way of working in England is to give confidence, and we still have the chance of winning three titles: FA Cup, Europa League and Premier League, even though we are 10 points from Leicester. Distances are less here.

"In England there is more patience, not only with Van Gaal.

"Mourinho, being three points from relegation, wasn't sacked. (Arsene) Wenger went nine years without any titles and continues there. City went three weeks without winning and there weren't any doubts about Pellegrini."

Herrera also suggested it was good news that Pep Guardiola is taking over at Manchester City next season, as it will inspire United to strive for improvement.

"I'm looking at it from a positive point of view. They're going to make us do better ourselves," he added.

"Historically, City have always been below United, and this gives them a psychological advantage, because they are coming from behind," Herrera told Spanish newspaper Marca.

"With Pep, with the multi-million pound outlay they've made and will spend with him, I expect the pressure to be higher for them.

"The fans are going to expect a lot: that they win the Premier League with a 10-point gap, that they reach the Champions League final.

"Pep seems a phenomenon to me. His teams always entertain me a lot, but at City the expectations will be very big."