Louis van Gaal does not think Manchester United is good enough to win the UEFA Champions League this year.
Man United head to Wolfsburg on Tuesday night knowing that a win will secure them a place in the knock-out stages but PSV winning in CSKA Moscow could see them crash out into the Europa League.
Having spent extensively over the last two summers, van Gaal has overhauled United’s squad but clearly thinks it still falls short of Europe’s elite clubs.
Speaking about United’s chances in Europe, van Gaal said: “I don’t think that we are able to win the Champions League now. Maybe next year when we strengthen our selection again.
“We have to go as far as possible but normally we are not good enough to win the Champions League. When we are there, we shall try to do everything. But you have to be realistic also.”
Well, I think every United fan would be the first to admit we’re probably not going to win the Champions League when talking among friends over a pint in the pub – but hearing van Gaal say it feels unnecessary. That being said, it’s not a surprise to hear him say it because he’s such a straight talker.
Personally, I think United should be challenging on all fronts. Our squad isn’t perfect and there are still improvements to be made, as can be said of any team, but after so much investment we shouldn’t be drawing 0-0 in five of our last ten games.
A crunch point for van Gaal’s tenure at United comes on Tuesday because if we don’t qualify for the knock-out stages of the Champions League, then real questions have to be asked. Come on, even David Moyes managed it.