Manchester United beat the San Jose Earthquakes 3-1 at the Avaya Stadium on Tuesday as the Red Devils are two-for-two from their International Champions Cup games in the United States of America this summer.
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During their preseason tour, manager Louis van Gaal has kept the media guessing over this mystery striker he is supposedly chasing, although the United boss has now backtracked on his previous comments and is now saying the “surprise” signing he has mentioned is not a forward.
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Anyway, he may have a top-class center forward right under his nose. New $40 million signing Memphis Depay, 21, usually operates as a winger but has played centrally for PSV Eindhoven. United only possess two out-and-out center forward in their current squad, Wayne Rooney and James Wilson, but with finishes like this, perhaps Depay could be deployed in that central role?
Take a look at the Dutch international scoring his first goal in a United jersey below, as he capitalized on some slack San Jose defending.
Another piece of news to come out of this friendly in California was van Gaal’s disdain towards the performance of his side. Speaking to reporters after the game, van Gaal wasn’t exactly complementary of his teams second half display and he believed new signing Bastian Schweinsteger struggled.
“The second half we played very badly, a lot of ball losses and the only highlight was the goal from Andreas Pereira. I think we don’t give many chances away, but we give possibilities away, it was a threat always, and that was not necessary. Our positions in midfield were not as good as in the first-half.
“He [Schweinsteiger] was also bad. Players can play bad, especially when they only have six days training in your legs and you have to play 45 minutes. Everyone can think it is easy to step in, but it’s not. The first match he played very well and now he played badly, but that is also a process when you only have one week of training.”
Haven’t you missed playing for van Gaal, Mr. Schweinsteiger?
The German national team captain won’t be overly bothered with the criticism and the Bayern Munich legend will certainly take it on the chin, but what is clear from United’s display against San Jose is that the new players are taking time to bed in and the fringe players in the squad aren’t up to the standards LVG wants at Old Trafford. Plenty of work to do for the Red Devils.