Januzaj is spending the entirety of the season in the Bundesliga but has only made two starts since signing for Dortmund on transfer deadline day. The move was meant to give the youngster some much-needed playing time and exposure to first-team football but the competition for places has meant he is yet to make a real impact in Germany.
Dortmund are having a stellar season under Thomas Tuchel but Man United will be concerned that Januzaj is struggling for playing time. It has not been a fruitful spell just yet and van Gaal has admitted that it was slightly expected.
“At a club like Borussia Dortmund, all the players are also of a certain level,” the Manchester United manager said.
“I said in advance that’s a big risk, because you have to compete with other players of a higher level and that’s not so easy.
“It’s the same as at Manchester United. He has to compete with higher-level players. I want him to play all the matches, and that’s why I wanted to play him in the Premier League, but he chose Borussia Dortmund.
“We have to wait and see [if it’s a good move] because now he doesn’t play.”
Despite the 20-year-old struggling to get on the pitch, van Gaal is confident that he has the ability to make it at the top level. However, the Dutchman feels that the youngster still has a long way to go in terms of his development.
He added: “I am certain he has the talent to play, but he has to learn a lot of things.
“Talent is important, but so is the character to develop your talent. And he can learn that.”
United have been found wanting in the final third at times this season and there is no doubt that Januzaj would help their chances going forward. The Belgian has proved that he has what it takes to succeed in the Premier League but his spell at Dortmund, along with his early season form, has shown that there is still a long way to go before he is the finished article.