Louis van Gaal has no regrets about taking Angel di Maria off at half-time against Sunderland and felt it was the right decision given the 2-0 result.
Di Maria was a shadow of the man who was so dangerous at the start of the Premier League season and had arguably his most ineffective 45 minutes in a Manchester United shirt.
Like he has done previously with Paddy McNair, van Gaal took Di Maria off early in the game and feels his decision was vindicated by the result.
“I want to win,” he said.
“I have to observe and analyse. We were better in the second half so I cannot say it was the wrong decision.
“We have to give him time to adapt and lift his confidence again. He’s a human being and makes mistakes like everyone else.”
Van Gaal was right to take off Di Maria. He would no doubt have enjoyed a better second half had he stayed on thanks to the extra space created after Wes Brown was given his marching orders but Januzaj had a great impact as a substitute.
Today was a game which will drain Di Maria’s confidence but he’ll simply have to dust off his boots and work harder.
For a player who cost £59.7m, fans understandably expect to see him have a big impact on every game but that hasn’t been the case since his injury problems kicked in.
With games against Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City all coming up for United, van Gaal needs to have his top players in good form so he’ll want Di Maria to improve, and quickly.