English Premiership

LVG defends Falcao omission

2015-01-12 09:16
Radamel Falcao (Supplied)
Radamel Falcao (Supplied)

Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal defended his decision to leave Colombia talisman Radamel Falcao out of the squad after he saw his side's 10-match unbeaten Premier League run ended by Southampton on Sunday.

Falcao, on loan from French club Monaco, scored in United's last league game against Stoke City and had begun to look sharp, but was not even on the bench as United toiled to respond when trailing 1-0 against a disciplined Southampton.

Asked afterwards for an explanation, Van Gaal said he had been forced to have several defenders on standby because of concerns over the fitness of Luke Shaw and Daley Blind.

Yet he still had young striker James Wilson on the bench, rather than Falcao.

"You have to compare players before the match. After the match you can say if a player should participate and you could have won, but you shall never know," van Gaal said during a tense post-match press conference.

"I decided he is out of the 18 because I have to change Luke Shaw and Angel Di Maria for example. You have to look at the needs of your selection at the time. Marouane Fellaini came in and because of his substitution we created three chances."

The result pushed Manchester United down into fourth place, below Southampton.

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman said earlier this week Manchester United should be challenging for the title after spending £150 million over the summer.

But it was a new face at Southampton, Serbian Dusan Tadic bought from Dutch side Twente in the summer, who proved the difference between the two sides and eclipsed United's British record signing, the near £60 million Angel Di Maria.

Koeman talked up Southampton's Champions League qualification prospects after the result and said a draw against Chelsea and a win over Arsenal during the festive period had grown belief among the players.

"I am not surprised that we won today, because I know the players. I know the organisation in the team. We have 11 clean sheets now by 21 games, I think if we keep the spirit we can keep in front in the table," he said.


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

29 October 2016
Sunderland v Arsenal, Stadium of Light 13:30
Manchester United v Burnley, Old Trafford 16:00
Middlesbrough v Bournemouth, Riverside Stadium 16:00
West Bromwich Albion v Manchester City, The Hawthorns 16:00
Watford v Hull City, Vicarage Road 16:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Leicester City, White Hart Lane 16:00
Crystal Palace v Liverpool, Selhurst Park 18:30
30 October 2016
Everton v West Ham United, Goodison Park 15:30
Southampton v Chelsea, St. Mary's Stadium 18:00
31 October 2016
Stoke City v Swansea City, Britannia Stadium 22:00
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2016/17 season?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.