Manchester United have finally put Louis Van Gaal out of his misery.
The Red Devils confirmed in a statement that their Dutch manager “is to leave with immediate effect.”
[ MORE: Reports say LVG close to exit ]
The decision comes 48 hours after Van Gaal, 64, delivered United’s first trophy since 2013 as his side beat Crystal Palace in the FA Cup final at Wembley on Saturday.
Jose Mourinho is expected to replace Van Gaal as just minutes after the Dutchman delivered the FA Cup trophy, reports broke that the Portuguese coach would be appointed this week.
[ VIDEO: Look at LVG’s bizarre tenure ]
In the statement Executive vice chairman Ed Woodward thanked Van Gaal and his staff for their work but revealed it was time to move on.
“I would like to thank Louis and his staff for their excellent work in the past two years culminating in winning a record-equalling 12th FA Cup for the club (and securing him a title in four different countries). He has behaved with great professionalism and dignity throughout his time here. He leaves us with a legacy of having given several young players the confidence to show their ability on the highest stage. Everyone at the club wishes him all the best in the future.
“A decision on a successor as manager will be announced soon.”
Moments after it was revealed that the Amsterdammer was out, a statement was released on his behalf.
“It has been an honor to manage such a magnificent club as Manchester United FC, and in doing so, I have fulfilled a long-held ambition,” Van Gaal said. “I am very disappointed to be unable to complete our intended three-year plan. I believe that the foundations are firmly in place to enable the club to move forward and achieve even greater success.
“I thank my players and wish them well for next season. It has been a pleasure to work with them and it has been particularly rewarding to see so many young players take their chance to break into the first team and excel. I look forward to watching the continued development of these young players next season.
“Thank you to the owners and board of Manchester United for giving me the opportunity to manage this great club. I would also like to express my gratitude to the amazing United supporters. They are truly the best fans in the world.”
Van Gaal signed a three-year contract at United in 2014 but has had his deal terminated a year early after failing to deliver a top four finish in the 2015-16 season. It has been reported that United reached a $7.5 million settlement with LVG to end his deal early.
His assistant coach Albert Stuivenberg and goalkeeper coach Frans Hoek have also left the club with immediate effect but it is believed Ryan Giggs has been offered a position to stay on at United, however it is unsure if the former star player will remain as part of Mourinho’s potential coaching staff as Giggs was touted for the top job after Van Gaal left and is said to not be a fan of “The Special One” and his tactics. Mourinho was shown strolling around the streets of west London on Monday as camera crews and photographers surrounded his house in England’s capital.
For the man he is expected to succeed, results have simply not been good enough this season for Van Gaal and fans have often booed the team for boring, bland play which saw them record their lowest goals per game ratio in the PL era.
The Dutchman led United to a fourth-place finish during his debut campaign but after finishing fifth this season and crashing out of the UEFA Champions League at the group stage, pressure has been mounting on the former Ajax, Barcelona, Netherlands and Bayern Munich manager to be axed.
Now, after months of speculation, Van Gaal is gone. All of the focus will now switch to his successor and it is expected to be Mourinho.
Reports state that Woodward will meet with Mourinho and his agent, Jorge Mendes, on Tuesday to discuss terms on a three-year deal to take charge of United. The apprentice looks set to replace his former master at Old Trafford and will aim to return the club to its glory days under Sir Alex Ferguson.
Van Gaal’s reign is over and many fans, pundits and former players of Manchester United will be rejoicing.
Now “The Special One” will return to the fray and although he only seems fit to deliver short-term success, the Red Devils will do anything they can to get back among the PL and Europe’s elite.