Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has said that his side are still in the hunt for a likely top four finish after the Red Devils secured a 1-0 win over Norwich City on Saturday.
While the result was impressive, the performance was lacklustre, to say the least. United failed to create enough goal scoring chances and could have found themselves on the backfoot early on had Cameron Jerome directed his free header goalwards.
A nicely constructed goal from Juan Mata in the second half was enough to earn United full three points, which puts the Red Devils in contention for a top-four place.
Manchester United are 5th in the league with 63 points, one point behind 4th placed Manchester City who face Arsenal on Sunday. If Arsenal beat City at the Etihad, it will present United with a great chance of qualifying for the Champions League next season.
Louis van Gaal will be hoping that Arsenal do them a big favour by beating City on Sunday. He said after the match that his side is “still in business” and believes that it won’t be easy for Manchester City “to revive” after their Champions League exit.
“Tomorrow, I will be a Gunners fan. Especially after the defeat against Real Madrid, it won’t be so easy for Manchester City to revive,” he said after the match.
“We are still in business. I said that to the players. Last week, it was cold, and now it’s 35 degrees. You saw it in the players’ faces. They were very tired, but we won.
“We keep the pressure on our competitors and hope we can achieve the Champions League place because we want to play at the highest level.”
Van Gaal, however, has defended his decision to not include Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford for the Norwich game. Martial felt tight in his hamstring during the warm-up and the Frenchman wasn’t risked while Rashford was left out of the squad in order to rest him.
United defender Matteo Darmian suffered an ankle injury during the match and was substituted in the first half. Van Gaal said that the Italian had “a kick on his ankle” but didn’t go into details about the extent of the injury.