Roy Hodgson has called up Jesse Lingard to the England squad for Tuesday night’s friendly against France.
The 22-year-old has broken into Manchester United’s first-team in recent weeks and the call-up is richly deserved in terms of how hard Lingard has worked to get himself into this position.
However, van Gaal is angry with the decision as less than a week ago he insisted it was far too early for him to be called up for England squad.
“I would say it is too much too early,” van Gaal said.
“We have to wait to see if he is consistent because he is more or less the same age as Memphis Depay.
“We have to wait but I am very happy with his contribution up until now. I have said already in my first year many times we need speed and creativity on the wings.
“You have seen that now we play with Jesse Lingard and he is not the most speedy winger in the world – and Mata is also not the most speedy winger in the world. So first we must first address that problem.”
Lingard himself will be over the moon and there is every chance this call-up will simply see him travel and train with the squad rather than get any game time, so the experience itself will be valuable.
Ahead of Euro 2016 in the summer, Lingard now knows that if he keeps up the good work with Man United then he has the opportunity to force himself into Hodgson’s squad on a permanent basis.