David Moyes reportedly lost the dressing room while in charge of Man United last season and was eventually sacked following a disastrous campaign.
Van Gaal has brought a fresh wave of optimism to Old Trafford following Moyes’ reign and clearly has the respect of his players.
Rooney praised the Dutchman and revealed his determination has inspired the United squad.
Speaking about van Gaal, Rooney said: ”He’s very approachable and always says to his players: ‘If you ever want to talk about anything, whether it’s about football or other things, the door is always open to you.’
“You can speak to him. He is 100 per-cent serious when it comes to training and games but, if you’re speaking to him about things other than football, he’s a genuinely nice guy.
“In terms of training sessions, every session means something. Even if it’s a little game, he wants the team who he is working with to win. He’s not happy if we don’t win. So his determination and will to win is incredible.
“I’ve seen it in other people but more on matchday in terms of games. But he’s on it every day and that certainly does rub off on the players.”
Van Gaal’s portrayal in the media so far this season has been one of a ruthless coach who demands respect from his players.
Rooney’s comments reveal a softer side to the Dutchman which may explain why the likes of Radamel Falcao, Juan Mata and Angel di Maria have not complained about van Gaal despite their troubles this term. However, the 63-year-old’s only concern is winning and he will be looking to continue his team’s good form against Aston Villa this weekend.