Manchester - There
is no easy way to sack a Premier League manager and Manchester United
have found that out the hard way with their firing of Louis van Gaal.
Some are calling the manner of the Dutchman's departure from United a
"public relations disaster" for England's most famous club as it
prepares to name Jose Mourinho.
The Dutchman was "apparently informed" of his impending departure by
his wife Truus on Saturday night after United had won the FA Cup, the
BBC reported. She had just read a news report on the Internet.
Van Gaal's predecessor David Moyes also found that he was to be fired from the media before he was told by Manchester United.
Calacus sports public relations agency managing director David
Alexander said Van Gaal's sacking may not be a surprise given the
results of the American-owned club.
But he said: "It is a public relations disaster for news to leak that
he was to be replaced almost before his team had even changed out of
their playing kit after savouring an extra-time victory at Wembley."
"United clearly had not learnt from their previous mistakes," he added.
A source close to the club said only that United had been "hampered"
in their communications because of the rules they face as a quoted
United should have put more emphasis on "confidentiality" among staff, Alexander said of the sacking rumours.
Statements should have been prepared in advance and "senior
executives should have ensured that a meeting with Van Gaal was held
quickly to ensure that he was appraised of the situation."
The Dutchman negotiated his departure with a top employment lawyer on Monday, two days after the reports started.
There had been widespread reports of player unrest over Van Gaal's tactics. But some said they felt Van Gaal was treated badly.
"The manager of a top club in England is naturally under much more
pressure but over the last six months he has not been treated fairly,"
said United's Dutch defender Daley Blind.
"I think a manager like Louis van Gaal, who has achieved so much
already, deserved more respect," Blind told reporters at the
Netherlands' training camp in Portugal.
Van Gaal and Manchester United “was a mismatch,” the Dutch daily
Trouw said. But it added that the major question now is whether Van
Gaal, 64, "still wants to, or can" go on with an illustrious career that
saw him win major honours at Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Ajax
Of his departure Van Gaal himself said only that he was
"disappointed" not to be able to carry out the third year of his
But media reports said he was given a pay off of more than £5
million in part not to speak
The Daily Mail newspaper said Van Gaal "feels aggrieved at his
treatment and the fact that his finest hour at United was ruined by news
of Mourinho's imminent appointment."
"United’s executives and communications team certainly have lessons
to learn after this episode," said Alexander of Calacus sports.
careless but for it to happen twice does not reflect well on a club of