Gill: I went to the cinema rather than watch United on TV

For­mer chief crit­i­cal of club’s play­ing style Pres­sure mount­ing af­ter de­feat to Southamp­ton

The Daily Telegraph - Total Football - - BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE - By Pete Oliver

David Gill has de­scribed Manch­ester United’s sea­son as one of “un­der­achieve­ment” at Old Traf­ford as the pres­sure con­tin­ues to grow on the man­ager, Louis van Gaal.

United were booed off fol­low­ing the 1-0 home de­feat against Southamp­ton on Satur­day, with much of the sup­port­ers’ frus­tra­tion aimed at Van Gaal, whose side failed to score at Old Traf­ford for the sev­enth time this sea­son.

They are now five points away from the Premier League’s top four and a Cham­pi­ons League qual­i­fy­ing place, which is all a far cry from the day of United’s mul­ti­ple ti­tle-win­ning days un­der Sir Alex Fer­gu­son, who worked closely with Gill as the club’s chief ex­ec­u­tive be­fore the pair both stood down in 2013.

Gill, who re­mains on United’s foot­ball board, along with Fer­gu­son, said: “Clearly we all hope the re­sults would be bet­ter and we are all dis­ap­pointed with that.

“Un­doubt­edly it has been a sea­son of un­der­achieve­ment given the in­vest­ment that was made in the sum­mer. But I know ev­ery­one is work­ing hard to turn that round. It’s not easy run­ning that club. It’s a dif­fi­cult process. We have to turn it around our­selves.”

United stuck by Van Gaal over a test­ing pe­riod around Christ­mas when United went on an eight­match win­less run.

That sup­port may be wa­ver­ing, al­though Gill, while ad­mit­ting that there are other good man­agers out there, would not be drawn on the fu­ture of the Dutch­man.

He said: “No­body likes to see that [the boo­ing]. We need to stay calm and act with the club in mind in terms of its pro­pos­als and tar­gets and where it’s mov­ing for­ward. The wider point is for Ed Wood­ward and the own­ers to dis­cuss which di­rec­tion the club is go­ing.

“If the NY board want to dis­cuss mat­ters with us, they will. We had great suc­cess un­der Sir Alex and we want that to con­tinue. There’s great strength in the club, the deals that they’ve done has given a re­ally sta­ble base and ev­ery­one is work­ing hard to bring back the suc­cess years. We all want that.

“You can’t stop the spec­u­la­tion. You just to have to be sta­ble – you hear the dis­trac­tions but you just have to have fo­cus. We all speak about ev­ery­thing.”

As well as United’s dis­ap­point­ing re­sults, the sup­port­ers have not en­joyed Van Gaal’s style of foot­ball, which has seen them score just 12 times at home in the Premier League this sea­son, and Gill him­self opted to go the cinema than watch a re-run of the game on Satur­day on

Match of the Day. Speak­ing to BBC 5 Live’s Sports

week, he said: “I’m not go­ing to sit here and say it’s that at­trac­tive. For me, what we did in the past was great. You have to have the play­ers to do that. United, go­ing back to the Fifties un­der Matt Busby, have had that – and I started sup­port­ing when we had Ge­orge Best.

“We want at­trac­tive foot­ball and I’m sure we will try and do that go­ing for­ward.”

United: Louis van Gaal and David Gill

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