Bastian Schweinsteiger believes Louis van Gaal will lead Manchester United to trophy success – but has urged supporters to be more patient over his approach.
The United boss has come in for criticism from supporters for their perceived negative style, with the club’s slow build-up play and sideways passing being met with chants of “Attack, attack, attack!” by supporters.
Van Gaal has urged supporters to aim their criticisms at him rather than players, but Yohan Cabaye – whose Palace side recently held United to a 0-0 draw – was also quick to berate their tactics.
Supporters used to thrilling, cavalier football in the glory days of Sir Alex Ferguson are finding it hard to adapt to a more cautious, risk-free approach under Van Gaal.
But midfielder Schweinsteiger, who enjoyed success under Van Gaal at Bayern Munich, is convinced the Dutchman has the blueprint for success – even if fans find it hard to accept the way he likes United to play.
“I recognise similarities between Louis van Gaal here and at Bayern Munich,” said Schweinsteiger.
“In Munich, if you remember, it took a while before the team understood exactly how we wants to play football. But in the end we won the Bundesliga title and made it to the Champions League final… so the fans in Munich loved him. We did the double.
“I’m sure Louis will bring success to United. I’m convinced about that, but we have to do our work and we have to improve. I’m convinced it will happen.
“You have to be patient. But, of course, during that you have to win, you have to get results and you have to score.
“You recognise what the supporters are saying – but football is not only attack.
“There are teams with different game styles and they also win titles. But I think especially in home matches we have to press and go forward.
“I think we did well offensively against West Brom. When you’re playing a team who defend with 10 men, it’s not easy to find the gaps.
“There’s still room for improvement, but we did improve on breaking a team down.
“The team spirit here is great.”
Schweinsteiger on bore draws
Schweinsteiger, who joined United from Bayern in the summer, pointed out his former club, regarded as one of Europe’s best sides, had not been immune to the odd bore-draw this season.
“It’s not exclusive to England,” said Schweinsteiger. “In Munich, in the German League or Champions League, it was exactly the same.
“It’s difficult back home as well. You’ve seen Bayern draw 0-0 recently against Frankfurt, because Frankfurt were defending with a lot of players.
“It happens, but you have to find solutions, and this is where we can still improve to make it easier for ourselves.
“It’s very important we win our matches at the moment. It’s difficult to play against teams with the kind of defensive strategy West Brom had, but I think we had the chances. Maybe not that many, but we could create chances, and that’s a good sign.
“It was good we didn’t give many chances away — only one header. That was very good.
“We need to win because the league is very tight. Especially matches at home, we have to win. It was important to go into the international break with a win, because the last two times were not very nice, having lost.”
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