United's walking wounded won't play

Updated: 2014-12-25 07:27

(China Daily)

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None of Manchester United's injured players are likely to be fit for the next Premier League match against Newcastle United, manager Louis van Gaal said on Tuesday.

Daley Blind, Marcos Rojo, Luke Shaw, Marouane Fellaini, Ander Herrera and Chris Smalling missed the 1-1 draw at Aston Villa and only Smalling has an outside chance of returning against Newcastle at Old Trafford on Friday.

"For a few players it is fine because they are recovering quickly," said van Gaal.

"You also have players who are not recovering so quickly, so I have to rotate. I have a lot of injured players, that is the problem with these matches."

United's 1-1 draw at Villa ended a run of six successive wins that has lifted van Gaal's side to third place.

The squad travels to Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday and Stoke City on Thursday before an FA Cup third-round trip to Yeovil.

"My record in away matches as a coach is not so bad," van Gaal said.

"Away, teams are more open and want to attack but here they want to defend. That is why we have to build up a certain playing style so we can dominate. I'm saying every week that we are dominating for 45 or 60 minutes. We have to dominate for 90 minutes."

Radamel Falcao headed the equalizer against Villa, only his second goal for United, and van Gaal is looking for more from the on-loan Colombian striker.

"He can be in great form, but the team has to be in great form. That allows Falcao to show his qualities," the manager said.


(China Daily 12/25/2014 page24)